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Traffic woes- Bangalore

Bangalore is a wonderful city to live in. I'm not the first one to say it and won't be the last. But there's always a caveat to that sweeping statement. Bangalore is a wonderful city to live in. BUT the traffic drives me crazy.  Again, I'm not the first one to say it and certainly won't be the last. With a huge  population that is only growing, the traffic situation in Bangalore is only going to get worse.

Many months ago, I decided to do a satirical piece on Bangalore's traffic. And so I began observing it closely. And slowly I began to understand that this wasn't an issue you could laugh away. Somewhere in the mad rush to success, development and modernisation, Bangalore's traffic has gone from being accidentally maddening to being deliberately cruel. People have lost the ability to judge right from wrong. There is only one rule on Bangalore's roads- the one that suits you.

Jumping signals, drinking and driving, motorcyclists riding on footpaths, showing no respect/ compassion for pedestrians, under utilising indicators and over utilising horns, driving in the wrong way and so on.
Picture Credits : The Hindu

People seemed to have forgotten that it is wrong to do these things. It is accepted, true. But it's wrong. There's an arrogance about Bangalore's traffic. If it doesn't change now, this menace will turn into a
monster. There's a reason for making rules. There are none for breaking them.

Why should you not jump signals?

You don't need an above average IQ to understand this. If your signal is red, someone else's is green. If you move, you're opening up the possibility of a nasty collision. You might be willing to take that risk but why should the poor guy coming through a green signal suffer for your stupidity? When you're involved in an accident, it really doesn't matter whose fault it was. If you're careful and not stupid, there's always a way to avoid it.
What is annoying is, at those signals with countdown timers, some "smart people" like to move when the timer is at 5 seconds or less. You've waited 125 seconds, just hold your horses for another 5. It's as if Bangalore has announced that 5 is the new zero and red with 5 seconds to go is the new green.

If the signal is red, you stop. If it's green, you go. If you can't follow simple instructions like that, you're either colour blind or .... not smart.

Why shouldn't you drink and drive?

Oh this is a controversial one. Some people believe that they can drive better when they're drunk. If you're intoxicated and driving, you're putting yourself and, more importantly, other people's lives at risk. Nobody should get hurt because your " belief " about your driving abilities were not true.
 If you're drunk, get a driver.

Why shouldn't you ride on footpaths?

Umm..I don't know...Maybe because it's a FOOTpath? Like the ones people should be allowed to walk on?
The footpaths in this city are unevenly laid and difficult to walk on anyway. As if that wasn't enough, you have these absolute fools who want to avoid traffic on the road, riding on these footpaths.
You oaf, where should people walk? And by the way, if there's a traffic jam, there's a huge line of people waiting in line. What makes you think that you've done enough in life to deserve that shortcut that avoids that traffic?

Why should you stop and let pedestrians cross the road?

It's called courtesy. It's difficult being a pedestrian in Bangalore. There are zebra crossings but the traffic doesn't seem to care. When you're at a signal, stop just before the zebra crossing so that pedestrians can cross the damn road.
Try being nice to people, it'll take 20 seconds but you'll feel good. Trust me.

Why should you use the indicator?

Because it indicates which way you're going. This is interesting especially with regard to two wheelers.
Bangalore's motorists have a curious method of indicating their intended direction. Their heads. If they turn their head to their right, they're going to turn that way and vice versa. Besides, you should know to judge their mentality because no matter what, if you crash into them or them into you, it is ALWAYS your fault.

Why should you honk less?

Makes this world a better place to live in. Please?

Why should you not drive in the wrong way?

I don't know. You tell me. Idiot.

There is this one more habit of Bangalore traffic that is disgusting and classless. Imagine this : There's a massive traffic jam. The other side of the road is relatively free. An ambulance is behind you. He takes the relatively free road to get the patient to the hospital quickly. At that point, there are these absolutely classless, disgusting, shameless group of people who will take advantage of it and follow the ambulance to skip the traffic. I have two questions for them.
1) Do you have no shame? You're taking advantage of a vehicle that's doing noble service.
2)Do you think the rest of the people waiting at the signal are crazy not to do it too? You must think you're smarter than everyone else to think of such a brilliant idea. You dolt.

There is no element of comedy in this article. There shouldn't be. It's a serious matter. It could be the line between life and death for innocent by-standers. It isn't cool to break the law. If you want to be a rebel, take that risk with your life, don't involve people who want to have nothing to do with your actions. Be courteous. It's a good habit. It'll help improve Bangalore's image.

On the roads, a vehicle is a weapon in the hands of an irresponsible driver. Be responsible. Drive safe. Don't put yourself in a situation you'll regret.

Stay Safe! Stay Informed!

Anirudh Dinesh.
Editor-At-Large, Dudurudh.


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