Illegal toll collection at IRB toll naka at Moshi, Pune

July 31, 2015

An incident showcasing another Toll corruption was seen at IRB toll naka where a localite was forced to pay toll tax.As per NHAI rules the local people near a toll plaza are exempted from the tax,but Mr preetam was forcibly made to pay the tax.He has already lodged a complain.Following is an excerpt from his lodged complain:

 

“Hi,

Today, I was forcefully made to pay toll tax at Moshi in Pune at an IRB toll tax naka. This even after I showed that my vehichle RC (MH 14 EC 2891- Dehu Road). I also informed them that I am a local and the visit was for my flat at Chimbali (Mantra Magic). Also, that I use to cross this toll regularly and never ever have I been asked for toll payment, once they see my RC.
Inspite of this the toll staffs barricaded, obstructed my vehicle and forced me to pay the tax.
I was manage to procure the identity of one of the employee named ’Prashant’, employee id- 12295.

In this regard, I would like to request you for below-
1) Conduct an immediate inquiry within a couple of days to ascertain the facts
2) Penalize the involved employees, also the employee that I have mentioned
3) Ensure that at all toll plaza it is mentioned that local people are not required to pay toll and mention the applicable local area for each toll, or, mention the travels for which one has to pay toll
4) Contact me on my given mail id keep me updated

I have put my experience on twitter, keeping in loop the CMO, Maharashtra.

If I do not get response on this by monday, I would place my application to NHAI and CMO, Maharashtra and Ministry of Highways, GOI for cognizance and finally plan to take it to consumer court for legal remedy.

Thank you,
Abhishek Kumar Preetam”

 

Lack of planning takes a toll on commuters

March 12, 2014

Hindustan Times (Delhi)

Asheesh Mamgain

With a little vision, the authorities could have avoided digging the second time. SURINDER SINGH, Nihal Vihar

The Nangloi-Najafgarh Road is a vital road link that connects north Delhi with west Delhi. The road sees heavy vehicular traffic throughout the day, and is one of the worst stretches in the city. Commuters lament that this has been the condition on the road for the last few years and given the state of affairs, the problems are likely to continue next year as well.

 

NADEEM HASSAN / HT PHOTO Work on Nangloi-Najafgarh Road was completed six months back and now it will be dug up again by DJB .The main reason for the problems related to the Nangloi-Najafgarh Road is the lack of coordination between different government agencies and lack of planning as well. The public works department (PWD) was involved in giving a fresh concrete layer to the road in the last few years. But the work was hampered when the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) initiated a major rupees nine crore sewerline project for the villages lining the road. The residents of villages such as Baprola, Bakarwala and Nilothi had been demanding a sewerline for years.

As a result the road was dug up and the road laying project got derailed and was consequently delayed. Though the road was completed six months ago after a delay of a couple of years, it is again going to be dug up by DJB. Says Pankaj Singh, the area councillor, “The sewerline the DJB had laid down for five villages along NangloiNajafgrah Road was a small one. Now in addition to these villages there are 25 other unauthorised colonies lining the road. Now the DJB has cleared another project of Rs 24 crore for putting in a bigger line.”

Says Surinder Singh, a resident of Nihal Vihar, “Only with a little vision, the authorities could have included these unauthorised colonies in the earlier sewerline project. This would have saved a lot of taxpayer’s money and also avoided another round of digging on the recently laid down road. The commuters are now going to have a tough time. But sewerline for our colonies is also an important issue.”

Another problem pertaining to the Nangloi-Najafgarh Road has been illegal vendors occupying precious road space. The problem still continues. Says Sukhdev Dabbas, a resident, “During evening hours, the road sees so much traffic and the presence of illegal vendors whose numbers is ever increasing, only compounds our problems.”

 

Source-http://paper.hindustantimes.com/

Nightmare travel on NH-5 stretch

December 11, 2013

Manabesh Mohanty,TNN |  

 CUTTACK: To cross a mere 500-metre stretch from Press Chhak and Madhupatna Square on National Highway No. 5, it takes more than 35 to 45 minutes.

NH-5 connects the twin cities of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar.

The problem is an under-construction flyover near Madhupatna for which the private construction company has not made arrangements for a diversion. This situation has been going on for the past three to four months.

The construction company in question has not made any attempts to clear encroachment on the road which would have made it possible to create a diversion.

The National Highways Authority of India declined to comment.

One pedestrian killed every week in 2013 in Kochi

December 10, 2013

Gireesh P Krishnan,TNN

KOCHI: This certainly is a dubious record that should make the traffic police squirm: In 2013, one person has been killed every week while trying to cross the city streets. In other words, five pedestrians lost their lives every month in 2013 till November with senior citizens accounting for a majority of the casualties.
The number has gone up despite the police and motor vehicles department (MVD) carrying out regular inspections at various places to reign in speeding and negligent driving.

As per the data available with the police, 59 pedestrians died on the city roads up to November this year compared with 49 deaths in 2012. However, pedestrian deaths were really high in 2011 with 72 citizens losing their lives in road accidents.

This year, in the month of November alone 11 pedestrians died after being hit by vehicles on city roads. According to police, majority of pedestrian deaths occurred on National Highway 47.According to police, despite repeated requests the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has not taken any steps to provide zebra crossings for pedestrians on NH. “With pedestrian deaths increasing, we had requested the NHAI and authorities to provide zebra crossings and erect barricades. But there was no response,” said P P Shams, assistant commissioner, traffic west. He added even the road safety council had asked the NHAI to provide zebra lines and erect barricades on the median.

Strikingly, most of the pedestrians killed in accidents this year were aged 50 and above. As per the data, over 30 pedestrians aged 50 and above were killed on city roads this year so far.

“It’s a matter of concern that most those who died in road accidents are aged people. Accidents happen mainly during evening hours. Lack of sufficient light could be a cause as people may not get a clear view of approaching vehicles,” he said. Meanwhile, the NHAI said that zebra crossings alone would not help to address the issue. “Along with zebra crossings, signalling systems should also be provided for pedestrians to cross,” said C T Abraham, project director, NHAI.

Abraham further said that erecting barricades on the median will not be of much use as they are removed by the public periodically at Vyttila Junction.

“In order to enable pedestrians to safely cross roads, foot overbridges are required. The NHAI has already approved five foot overbridges at important junctions, including Vyttila,” said Abraham, adding that the construction of the bridges was likely to start in five or six months.

Uttarakhand CM unhappy with BRO

December 9, 2013

D S Kunwar, TNN

 

DEHRADUN: Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna on Saturday expressed dissatisfaction over Border Road Organization’s (BRO) inability to complete reconstruction and repair work on the Uttarkashi-Gangotri, Uttarkashi-Yamnotri and Gaurikund-Kedarnath highways within the timeframe it was given.

“I am completely unhappy over the way BRO has been doing its job,” he said. This comes nearly six months after flash floods hit the state causing extensive damage to crucial highways in Rudraprayag, Chamoli and Uttarkashi districts.

 Bahuguna said he will call on Union minister for road transport and highways Oscar Fernandez to request him to handover reconstruction and repair work to the state government from the BRO to speed it up.

“I am sure the central government will consider our request keeping in view difficulties being faced by victims living in disaster struck areas in these districts for want of timely reconstruction of these roads,” additional chief secretary Rakesh Sharma said.

Bahuguna said as most of those who were rendered homeless by the disaster have declined to accept the state government’s offer to give them pre-fabricated houses.

Uttarakhand government will pay Rs 7 lakh as compensation to each family for to build their houses at earmarked ecologically safe areas. A senior IAS officer said most preferred to accept the compensation offer instead of pre-fabricated houses.

Bahuguna said the government has been paying Rs 3000 as monthly rent to each family till their houses are reconstructed. “I think this monthly rent for each affected family will considerably help them,” he said.

 

Source-http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Citizens’ group opposes construction of flyover

December 5, 2013

TNN

 

AURANGABAD: Activists of the Mundha Naka Uddanpul Virodhi Nagri Kruti Samiti on Wednesday staged demonstrations against the proposed construction of a flyover at the Mundha naka on Jalna road by the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC).

A bandh was also observed by shops in the area till noon, as directed by the activists. Samiti president - Jitendra Motwani said that a proposal for the flyover was made considering the traffic conditions in 2005-06. However, in lieu of the present situation, activists demanded that the flyover, which is being planned from Amarpreet chowk to Akashwani square in the Mundha naka area, be reconsidered.”The major traffic flow from the main market area towards the Satara and Beed bypass area flows from this road and will eventually increase,” Motwani said.Activists also demanded that a fresh survey be conducted. Motwani said that businesses would also suffer by the traffic diversion leading to inaccessibility of retail outlets and gradually affect employment in the area.

The Samiti members suggested that the underpass should be constructed as an alternative route. “The map drawn does not look feasible for the Rs 17 crore project,” Motwani said.

Aurangabad: Activists of Mundha Naka Uddanpul Virodhi Nagri Kruti Samiti on Wednesday staged protests against the proposed construction of flyover at Mundha naka on Jalna road by the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation Limited.

The activists also observed a bandh for the shops in the area till noon.
Jitendra Motwani president of the Samiti said that a proposal for the flyover was made considering the traffic conditions in 2005-06. However, considering the present situation the activists demanded that the flyover be considered from Amarpreet chowk to Akashwani square, which lie prior and later to the Mundha naka.
“The major traffic flow from main market area towards satara and Beed by pass area flows from this road and would increase eventually, “Motwani said.

The activists further demanded that a fresh survey be conducted in this regard. Motwani said that the business would also be affected due to diversion of traffic leading to inaccessibility of retail outlet, gradually affecting employment also.

The members also suggested an underpass to be constructed as an alternative way. “The map drawn also points many technical aspects which do not look feasible for the Rs 17 crore project, “Motwani said.

Sunita Narain: Come out and claim the road

November 15, 2013

We have built city roads only for cars to move. Cars rule the road

Sunita Narain

I write this column from my bed, recovering from an accident that broke my bones. I was hit by a speeding car while cycling. The driver fled the scene of the accident in the car, leaving me bleeding on the road. This is what happens again and again, in every city of our country, on every road – as we plan without care for the safety of pedestrians and cyclists. These are the invisible users. They die doing nothing more than the most ordinary thing like crossing a road. I was more fortunate. Two cars stopped, and strangers helped me and took me to the hospital. I received treatment. I will be back, fighting fit.

And this is one battle that needs our combined attention. We cannot lose the space to walk and cycle. Since my accident, relatives and friends have berated me for being so reckless as to cycle on Delhi’s roads. They are right. We have built city roads only for cars to move. Cars rule the road. There are no dedicated lanes for cycles; there are no sidewalks. The little stretches that do exist are either dirty or taken over by parked cars. Roads are for cars. The rest don’t matter.

But cycling and walking are difficult not just because of poor planning. It is also because of the mindset that only those who move in a car have status and road rights. Anyone who walks or cycles is considered poor, wretched and destined to be marginalised, if not obliterated.

This is what must change. We have no option but to reinvent mobility, as I keep repeating. Toxic smog in Delhi recently reached a new peak. Last month, the World Health Organisation declared air pollutants a human carcinogen. We must realise that this pollution is not acceptable. It is killing us, and no longer softly or slowly. But if we are serious about combatting air pollution, we have no option but to think about restraining the growth of cars. Learn how to move people, not cars.

When the Centre for Science and Environment began its campaign against air pollution in the mid-1990s, it did everything conventional. It pushed to improve the quality of fuel; improve emission standards of vehicles; and to put the inspection and maintenance systems for checking tailpipe emissions in place. It also pushed a leapfrog solution: the transition to compressed natural gas (CNG) for grossly polluting vehicles such as diesel buses and two-stroke autorickshaws. That made a difference. There is no doubt that the quality of air would have been even worse, even more deadly, without these steps.

But this is not good enough. Pollution levels are rising again, inexorably and inevitably. All research points to one cause and one big solution: building transport systems differently. We also have the option of doing this. We still haven’t motorised; nor have we built every flyover or four-lane road. Most importantly, much of India still takes the bus, walks or cycles – in many cites as much as 20 per cent of the population bikes. We do this because we are poor. Now the challenge is to reinvent city planning so that we can do this as we become rich.

For the past few years, this is exactly what we have been working on – how to bring back integrated and safe public transport options to our cites, so that even if we own a car, we don’t have to drive it.

But the keyword is integration. We can build a metro or get new buses, but if we do not have last-mile connectivity, then it will still not work. It has to be seamless and effortless. This is why we need to think differently.

This is where we are failing. Today there is talk of transport, cycling and pedestrians’ needs. But it is empty talk. Every time there is an attempt to convert a part of the road into a cycle track, the proposal is virulently opposed. The argument is that it cannot be done because it will take away space from cars and will add to congestion. But that is exactly what we need to do – reduce lanes for cars and add space for buses, cycles and pedestrians. This is the only way to get out of the ever-growing car bulge on roads.

This takes courage of conviction. On our overcrowded and chaotic roads, planning for cycle tracks and keeping sidewalks clean and clear will take lots of effort. I have absolutely no illusions that this will be easy to plan or to implement. But why should that deter us? The rest of the world has learnt successfully to rework road space so that it provides dignity and accessibility to cyclists and pedestrians. It has learnt to restrict space for cars and yet build extremely liveable cites.

Just think of the double bonus: getting rid of the most noxious source of pollution will result in clean air; and having the option to get some exercise while commuting will mean healthy bodies.

This is what we have to fight for. And we will. I hope all of you will join us in making the right to cycle and walk with safety non-negotiable.

PS: To the strangers who took me to the hospital and to the extraordinary doctors at the AIIMS trauma centre who saved my life, thank you.

sunita@cseindia.org

Raids by transport officials reveal half the buses flout norms

November 5, 2013

By Express News Service – TIRUPATI

 A file photo of Tirupati RTO MSSB Prasad checking a fire-extinguisher in a private Volvo bus in Tirupati | Express photo

  • A file photo of Tirupati RTO MSSB Prasad checking a fire-extinguisher in a private Volvo bus in Tirupati | Express photo
The raids conducted by the transport department officials against private operators revealed how the private buses are flouting the norms.

First among the violations is that most of the private bus operators, who took contract carriage permit, completely violate the norm. According to the contract carriage permit, the operator should transport a group of passengers from one stage to a fixed destination without allowing any passengers in and out of the bus in the middle of journey between the starting and ending points. But, a majority of the bus operators pick up the passengers for filling up vacant seats.

Similarly, about 50 per cent buses operated to various parts from Tirupati do not have the prescribed mechanical condition and other tools like fire extinguishers. The norm of the presence of two drivers in long journey buses, more or less remained on the RTA rule books as no private bus plying between Tirupati and Hyderabad having such a facility.

“Hardly it takes 10 hours for reaching Hyderabad from Tirupati and we don’t think there is a need for additional driver,” said a private bus operator on the condition of anonymity.

When asked a transport department official over the violation of the norms by private bus operators, he said that they are limited to converting crime into revenue. “Following the mishap in Mahbubnagar district, we swung into action and are levying fine on private bus operators for flouting norms, which is nothing but using such incidents as a source of revenue generation.”

Saying that unlike the forest and excise Acts, the Motor Vehicle Atc (MV Act) does not have authority to confiscate the vehicles flouting norms, he added that as per the MV Act they are only permitted to seize a vehicle for violation and will have to release the same after collecting some money in the form of fine. But, in case of the forest and excise Acts, the question of releasing the seized vehicles will not arise, he said and sought such ruling in the MV Act. As the Volvo bus will will cost at least Rs one crore, no owner will dare to violate the prescribed norm as they don’t want to loose their vehicle, he observed.

Though, it is not at all a financial burden to place fire extinguishers and hammers in side the bus,  which are required tools in case of emergency, the operators adopt negligent attitude due to lack of serious punishment, said another official.

Admitting that the transport department is not in a stage to take up drives at regular intervals, the officials attributed it to the staff crunch. As we have to deal with office work like issuing licenses, registrations and other tasks, we are only limited to take such drives only on some occasions, they said.

When contacted the Tirupati regional transport officer (RTO) MSSB Prasad, he said that about 50 per cent of buses do not have required conditions as well as flouting the norms. Particularly, on weekends, private bus operators are plying unconditioned buses. To cash the passengers rush on these days, they are bringing up the substandard buses on to the roads playing havoc with the passengers lives, he said.

Stating that they are taking up raids on the private buses time to time, he said that they are going to organise an awareness meeting soon to drivers of private buses.

On the lines of flights, where the air-hostess explains the passengers about the emergency exits and availability of balloons and parachutes, the bus drivers should also explain the passengers about the emergency windows, hammers and how to use them during emergency before starting journey, he said adding that the proposed awareness meet is aimed to deal with such issues.

Source-http://newindianexpress.com

 

 

Misbehaving of Security personnel and delay in passing

October 21, 2013

 

From: Balasubramanian M. Iyer
Subject: Misbehaving of Security personnel and delay in passing

Message Body:
This is in furtherance to my below mail of 24th May 2013 relating to earlier incident of 17th May 2013 whereby due to irregular arrangement at your Toll Plaza self sufferred loss which have been sorted out amicably is now past affairs.

Now within a span of 5 months another shamful incident occurred on 18.10.2013 midnight (from 2300 hrs. 2400 hrs) at your above said Toll Plaza whereby the security personnel posted by your Department; who were on DRUNKEN MODE attacked my Office colleagues without any wrong doing by us.

Gist of incident:

Around 2300 hrs. on 18.10.2013 while we are returning from our Office duty at Sikka (we are working for Reliance at their RJMT, Port) the Toll booth is closed and no attendee is there to collect cash. (FYI we are having permanent monthly paid card). As we were so tired and reaching Jamnagar by late and are planning to attend duty next day due to closing of collecting point, upon wating of 10 minutes, we alongwith other vehicles behind us tried to push the ENTRY STICK by side as nobody is attending the booth at time, some security personnels blocked our march and thrashed us which created a noisy scene which is unwarranted.

The things become more worse and Police crom City of Jamnagar have intevened over phone as at that time of incident in police post no personnel available.

This type of incident is badly affecting your brand name L&T as a whole and DUE TO NON MANAGING THE BOOTH WITH WELL EDUCATED PERSONNEL BY YOU IS the result of worst adminstration on your part.

Earlier we have suggested to your Mr. Yashsish Trivedi to allot two entry points for Heavy vehicle and 4 for medium vehicle which fallen on deaf ears of your management. It clearly shows letharginess in manning the Toll Plaza by you and similar types of incidents has been occurred in past month too and no remedial action has been taken.

Submitted please for prompt action and improvement.

Mobile: 9725281857

 

Economic Offences Wing unlikely to probe toll ‘fraud’ by Gurgaon e-way firm

October 15, 2013

Neeraj Chauhan & Dipak Kumar Dash, TNN |

 
NEW DELHI: The Economic Offences Wing(EOW) of Delhi Police is likely to turn down NHAI’s request to investigate irregularities in the reporting of toll collection by the Gurgaon expressway operator.The EOW will cite jurisdictional issues as well as the fact that the CBI specializes in investigating such matters while expressing its inability to take up the probe into what looks like a major under-reporting of revenue by Delhi-Gurgaon Super Connectivity Ltd (DGSCL). NHAI in its application had alleged that it lost Rs 24 crore due to under-reporting between August 2012 and July 2013.

The EOW is looking into the matter as part of a preliminary enquiry. A senior Delhi Police officer said, “The primary opinion of investigators and experts in our unit is that the CBI has already investigated a similar case and it is fit to probe such a case. Also, the irregularities have taken place in Gurgaon and the EOW has no jurisdiction there”.

Sources said the NHAI and the highways ministry will be informed once the final decision is taken. EOW, a specialized unit of Delhi Police, usually investigates frauds of more than Rs 2 crore and cases referred by Delhi courts. However, it has never investigated a case related to Gurgaon, said sources.

Alleging a breach of trust, NHAI had complained that the operator, DGSCL, resorted to ‘dishonesty’ by diverting toll for its own use. NHAI has said the concessionaire, its directors, officers and other persons were party to ‘criminal conspiracy’ with an intent of fraud.

 

Source-http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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