Underpass at Dhaula Kuan sees gridlock

 thehindu.com  10/12/2019 18:50:31 

The flyover that opened to the public over National Highway-8 at Dhaula Kuan junction has managed to ease traffic but the underpass, which is still under construction, has become a cause of congestion leaving commuters fuming.

The underpass, which begins at Parade Road junction and heads towards Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA), was inaugurated in July. However, the work on it is still in progress. This leads to a kilometer-long gridlock while taking left towards the IGIA after crossing Dhaula Kuan metro station, especially during peak hours.

Commuters travelling from Gurugram towards Dhaula Kuan sometimes face a two-km gridlock near the underpass due to the construction work.

Meanwhile, another underpass being built from Maharana Pratap Road towards Army Hospital, adds to the mess.

Tushar Jain (34) from east Delhis Krishna Nagar, who works in a multi-national company in Gurugram, said he travels during the peak hours as his shift timings are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

I leave my house at 8.45 a.m. and reach office by 10.15-30 a.m. almost daily. While coming back, its the same problem because of the construction work which has been going on for months now. Earlier, during the construction of the flyover, there used to be traffic near Dhaula Kuan metro station and now, while that has become free, its come a little ahead. The problem remains unsolved, he said.

He also alleged that there are hardly any traffic police officers at the spot.

They are only present at picket points and issue challans. They are never present at places where there is a bottleneck and two-wheelers drive at their whims and fancy, he added.

Ground reality

When The Hindu visited the junction area during peak hours on Thursday evening, not even a single traffic police officer could be spotted on the entire stretch.

A contractual employee, who works at the site and sometimes manages traffic there, said: There is traffic here almost at all times of the day. It only eases from 2 a.m. till sunrise. Recalling the day it rained last week, he said the traffic jam began at 7.30 a.m. when it started to pour and the situation only got better at 2.30 p.m. This happened due to waterlogged roads, he added.

An autorickshaw driver, who ferries passengers from Central Delhi till Parade Road, Suresh Kumar, said one of the main reasons for the bottleneck towards IGI Airport and Gurugram is that on one side, construction work is going on, and on the other side of the road, they have kept construction material, which leaves little space for vehicles.

An National Highways Authority of India official, on the condition of anonymity, said: This problem will be solved once the construction is complete. It is likely to be finished in the next 10 days.

Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Narendra Bundela said, It is an infrastructural issue, once the work is complete, it should help in decongestion.

Addressing the complaints of the commuters regarding the absence of traffic policemen, he said: Most of this area does not have a traffic signal so we do not deploy any officer there. Traffic staff is required where there is encroachment or a signal. However, we will look into the matter as it has been flagged.

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