Thursday, March 25, 2010

Traffic Cops … What exactly is their ‘duty’?

Mumbai's Traffic Cop's duty is to control traffic or collect fines ?

On so many occasions I have seen traffic cops leaving the junctions and standing about 100-150 feet away waiting to pounce on vehicles while there is traffic chaos at the junction. Even when the junction does not have a traffic light or has a faulty one … and the traffic is going for a toss. I have seen this situation several times near MIDC/SEEPZ where the traffic is pretty bad on a regular basis.

On so many occasions I have seen multiple traffic cops standing together chatting and strategizing how to catch and which one (vehicle) to catch while the traffic situation at the junction goes for a toss.

The worst is watching up to 6 ... yes, you read it right, it is SIX, traffic cops standing in the same spot. Yes, that's the situation I often witness under the Western Express flyover of Andheri where the traffic from the eastern side pours onto the highway and crosses under to go towards the East-West flyover and Telli Galli. Anyone who has travelled on that road during peak hours would know that this particular road is jam packed.

There is a working traffic light here and as such there is no need for 6 traffic cops here. Now that they are actually there, why don't they actually do some good work by controlling the traffic situation by systematically spreading on all sides of the junction, coordinating with each other and not allowing vehicles to idle bang in the middle of the junction; a situation often created when the signal is Green but the road ahead is jam packed. The idling vehicles in the junction STOP the flow of vehicles in all other direction when the signal goes red and vehicles travelling in other direction need to move.

 No. The traffic cops are NOT there to control or ease out the traffic. This junction provides a very good opportunity to them to collect fines from vehicles. Looking at the traffic situation, people often make a on-the-spot decision and change their route to avoid traffic. The traffic cops watch out for them and catch them when they change tracks. Or they pounce on the 2-wheelers who try to move ahead from the sides wherever they get some space often emerging on the left side of the road when they actually have to go right. When they try to cross over, the traffic cops are there to catch them. This is their favorite catch and hence all 6-7 of them stand at a particular spot … waiting for this kind of catch.

Wish someone high up in traffic control department begins to survey, inspect and review the way of working of the department people. The primary goal of the traffic cop should be to control and ease out the traffic and NOT just to stand there and collect fine while the traffic goes into a chaos.

Of course, Traffic cops are not all bad. There are some who actually understand Traffic Control and stand there right in the middle trying their best to ease out the traffic. They use their brains and their intuition to work out the best possible flow of traffic. I am all praises for them. They don't concentrate on who can be caught. They concentrate to achieve a situation when no one needs to jump a signal or need to be caught.

Wish Mumbai Traffic Control had more of these good cops and less of the Bad ones who have conveniently forgotten what actually their role is.


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Railway stealing from Mumbai Local Train commuters

My father brought this to my notice and he asked me to send a letter to the Hindi Newspaper 'Nav Bharat Times' highlighting this brazen stealing ... I have sent the letter to NBT and posting it here on my blog too
Subject: Aap ka Mann -- Railway is stealing from commuters of Local Trains using Smart Card

रेलवे की छुपी हुई लूट  ( स्मार्ट कार्ड के जरिया ) 
रेलवे बड़े बड़े विज्ञापन द्वारा आम आदमी को यह लुभावने सन्देश देता हैं की आप अपना समय बचाने के लिए  ओर बड़ी लम्बी कतारों से बचने के लिए स्मार्ट कार्ड का उपयोग करें टिकेट ओर रेलवे सीज्हन पास खरीदने के लिए . लोगो को प्रोत्साहित करने के लिए ओर लुभाने के लिए वो ५% अतिरिक्त amount भी देते हैं स्मार्ट कार्ड लोड करते समय
मगर स्मार्ट कार्ड द्वारा सीज्हन पास बनाते  समय बिना बताये या पास पर बिना दिखाए ५% के हिसाब से पैसे काट दिए जाते हैं स्मार्ट कार्ड में से. इस बात का उल्लेख रेलवे ने कहीं पर भी नहीं किया हैं - न किसी विज्ञापन में, न ही मशीन द्वारा जारी किये गए सीज्हन टिकेट पर, न ही मशीन के स्क्रीन पर जब सीज्हन पास निकला गया  ! यह सरासर लूट हैं ओर बेईमानी हैं. बिना बताये पैसे गायब कर दिए जाए अगर स्मार्ट कार्ड में से तो वो चोरी से कम नहीं हैं ! क्यों कोई सीज्हन पास करवाएगा स्मार्ट कार्ड का उपयोग करके अगर ५% ज्यादा पैसे लगेंगे ??
मैंने ३ बार चर्चगेट से मलाड की फर्स्ट क्लास की पास बनवाई जिसकी कीमत १२५५  रूपए हैं. हर बार स्मार्ट कार्ड में से ६३ रूपए काट दिए गए | इस तरह रेलवे ने मेरे स्मार्ट कार्ड में से ६३ X  ३ = १८९ रूपए चोरी कर लिए हैं !
मैं चाहूँगा की रेलवे के अधिकारी मुझे मेरे पैसे का हिसाब दे ओर मुझे रिफंड  दे ! मुंबई लोकल ट्रेन के प्रवासियों से मेरा निवेदन हैं की वो अपना स्मार्ट कार्ड इस्तेमाल करते ध्यान रखे की रेलवे कहीं उनके कार्ड से पैसे तो नहीं चुरा  रहा .  
कांतिलाल जैन ( अँधेरी)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Change is Good !

I walked into the Smokin Joes opposite to my office ...
Placed an order for a Pizza and handed over 500 bucks currency note to the person at the counter
(strangely at this particular joint ... you place order at counter and pay first unlike other joints where it is normal dine in where u pay at the end)
The counter person tells me "Sir, no change. You give me change"
I said "Well. Then cancel the order" ... and walked out.
Change hota to Smokin Joes would have gained a bill / some revenue
Lack of change. Loss of Business !!