Cover Story

TRAFFIC CHOKES BANER PASHAN LINK ROAD, CITIZENS IRKED

30/03/2019

Residents of Baner- Pashan Link road are struggling with long traffic jams in peak hours and facing severe fatal and near fatal accidents due to incomplete road since many years

“Traffic jam, broken footpath, and narrow road “These words have become a common routine for the residents of Baner- Pashan link road. Despite of being selected area for smart city project, residents Baner- Pashan link road are struggling for basic amenities like appropriate road, sufficient and comfortable footpath and most importantly traffic regulation during peak hours.

IS CIVIC AUTHORITY TURNING
A BLIND EYE ?

“We have been following the issue of incomplete road and traffic congestion since many years to PMC but PMC is turning blind eye towards this most important issue. We have received only letters of promises from PMC officials and also from traffic department. Neither PMC is taking any firm step to solve this issue nor the traffic department looking into traffic jam issue seriously. We are facing long traffic jams in peak hours.  As the road is narrow, traffic cannot move fast and also it creates major problems for pedestrians to even walk on road side”, informed Rajendra Chatur, president of Baner- Pashan Link road Welfare Trust.

WIDER AND ENCROACHMENT FREE ROADS ARE NEEDED

Chatur also highlighted that, Veritas chowk from where the Baner- Pashan link road starts has very short passage for the commuters from both side i.e. from Baner and from Pashan. We have submitted an application to PMC regarding increasing the space for the passage in Veritas chowk. Also the road from Rolling Hill society to Wakeshwar chowk is lying incomplete since last 20 years though it is sanctioned in DP (Development Plan) of PMC. PMC should take prompt action about this otherwise citizens will protest strongly and will approach higher authorities.

Everyday Battle FOR RESIDENTS

Many IT professionals, children and senior citizens use Baner – Pashan link road as it is very convenient and shortest route that connects offices and schools in Baner, Balewadi and Hinjewadi.

Rohan Bhatmule, an IT professional who commutes on Baner- Pashan link road every day to reach his office on Baner road shared his experience, “I have to wait in long que every evening especially in peak hours. Though there is traffic police in Veritas chowk, he cannot manage much as passage for commuting from both side is very narrow.Going further road from new passportoffice is surrounded by societies which is not sufficient foe heavy and continuous traffic. Traffic jam have become every day headache for commuters.”

Going for morning or evening walk has become dream for the residents of Baner- Pashan link road. Senior citizens are afraid of going for walk that any moment they may face an accident or stuck in traffic jam which will not be released for long hours.

Sarita Sarnaubat, who ride bike every day to drop her kids to school said, “Before leaving home, I have to take a look of traffic from my balcony and then decide whether to go out. Every day I feel scared that will anyone dash my bike from front or back and my kids will be hurt. I also get tensed when my in-laws get out of autorickshaw on roadside. It has become risky to even to get into autorickshaw or cab for senior citizens and pregnant ladies.”

Blame Game

When asked about traffic congestion on Baner- Pashan Link road, Prakash Masalkar, Traffic Police Inspector of Baner denied to admit that traffic congestion is everyday problem in Baner- Pashan link road area.  Masalkar told Pune Pulse that, “We have not observed frequent traffic jams in Baner-Pashan link road except peak hours. Still we are trying our level best to control traffic snarls in peak hours. But citizens should understand the fact that there are narrow passages on many spots of this road especially the drainage water source which is little far from Veritas chowk. We have asked PMC to broaden the width of the road so that commuters from both side can drive easily without making a way out of traffic chaos. Till date, we haven’t received any form answer from PMC in this regard. We are going to experiment pilot run to derive traffic from the left side in Wakeshwar chowk which is the dead end of Baner- Pashan link road and make it U turn and connect to Pashan –Sus road. Prohibiting the entry to right side in Wakeshwar chowk will help in avoiding traffic jams. We will also request PMC to decrease the size of the traffic island in Wakeshwar for more space to the commuters.”

Local Corporator Amol Balwadkar said that he is following up this problem with PMC and planning to make an underpass in Mahabaleshwar chowk as a solution.  Balwadkar also added that, he will report this issue in next budget of PMC and will soon restart the long pending work of incomplete road. 

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