Fed up with traffic jams in India? Thought of any jugaad yet for the #OddEvenFormula of Mr. Kejriwal to reduce traffic snarls in Delhi? The rule where you will be allowed to commute on odd and even numbered cars on alternate days, is going to be effective from 1st January, 2016. Now, the entire country doubts how many will follow it. I urge everyone to surprise the world by following this rule strictly. Yes, without any jugaad. Yes, for your own good. Yes, for the good of the city you live in. If Beijing can record a dip in air quality index to a pristine 17 out of 500 by implementing the #OddEvenFormula, if Paris and London can experience ‘All-Blue Skies’ while observing car-free days, why can’t WE?
Like Delhi, there are many Indian cities that drive citizens crazy with traffic congestion. While it is very common to get stuck for 3-3.5 hours in Bangalore roads, Delhi takes some 2 hours to reach a distance of 10 km during peak hours. Some fastest growing Indian cities are only focusing on industrial and urban expansion while sidelining traffic woes. However, if the entire nation takes inspiration from the lesser congested and polluted ones like Kochi, Chandigarh, Surat and Gandhinagar, we will have a complete healthy environment to survive.
Ibibo’s Newest Carpooling App, Ryde
Ibibo’s newest initiative ‘Ryde’ lets you car-pool in the easiest possible way. A simple mobile app download, choosing your route, getting picked from your home and paying per seat through the app – that’s sure going to help you get through the #OddEvenFormula while ensuring less polluting emissions and reduced traffic congestion. And in the event, you make new friends, yay! So be the change and opt for ride-sharing.
In the meantime, for awareness, scroll through the list of 10 Indian cities with the worst traffic scenarios!
Unplanned traffic, adverse public transport infrastructure, migration and rapid illegal urbanization makes Delhi one of the worst traffic hit cities in the world. With more than 1 lakh vehicles including trucks, private cars, buses, cabs and two wheelers travelling on Delhi-NCR roads daily, it has also become the world’s most polluted region. Unfortunately, with uncontrolled car distribution, it is expected to remain in the top rank of ‘cities with maximum number of cars in India.’
Be the Change: Follow Delhi CM’s #OddEvenFormula and observe more car-free days. Use the metro, metro feeder bus, DTC bus services for commuting. Try it for a change! It won’t make much of a difference to you but would make a lot of difference to the traffic and pollution metres. Tourists can board Hoho buses for Delhi sightseeing rather than taking cabs/taxis and travel like a local.
Wrong parking/inadequate parking space, millions of unregistered vehicles, increased pedestrians and narrow poor quality roads have turned Bangalore into the 6th most painful cities to commute. The Chief of Traffic, Bangalore City, feels that with Bangalore having more than 4 million vehicles, it is difficult for traffic police alone to control the situation. Knowledge about traffic signage, road markings, road etiquette, expansion of metro rail and better road infrastructure can improve the present disastrous scenario.
Be the Change: Many IT companies have introduced communication networks effectively to control traffic snarls. Employees can avail such shuttle services or go for car-pooling, rather than bringing individual cars. Both AC and non-AC public buses are available in plenty on Bangalore roads. Start making use of them!
As per pollution indices caused by vehicle emission, Mumbai has become the worst traffic hit Indian city. Presently it has more than 2 million cars. As per CO2 Emission Index, it takes an average of 67 minutes to reach a destination. As India’s population is expected to increase further, there will be a whopping rise in vehicle sales and road density. Therefore, as a first step, Mumbai developed plans of constructing new flyovers to disperse traffic and reduce congestion.
Be the Change: People should depend more on mass transit rail systems and supplementary bus rapid transit systems (BRTS). Use more of Mumbai local trains, BMC buses and recently introduced metro rail. Mumbai has shared taxi services in major areas like Victoria Terminus and Gateway of India. Considered to be the safest city in India, walking is not a bad option either. Stay fit and enjoy Mumbai’s cool sea breeze while helping in lowering traffic jams and pollution levels.
The city has only about 14% registered vehicles and millions unregistered ones. With a mere 28 km metro track, road traffic in Kolkata has turned worse. Faulty traffic signals, bad roads, lack of driving etiquette create daily trouble for citizens. Sudden dharnas by political parties are add-ons to the problem. West Bengal government aims to deploy more traffic police, make stringent traffic rules, construct more flyovers, ban dharnas and conduct vigilance to make commuting easier.
Be the Change: Avail AC and non-AC public buses, shared auto-rickshaws, trams, no-refusal taxis, metro rails and local trains. More environment conscious people can use e-rickshaws or opt for cycling/walking to nearby places. Public conveyance is cheapest in Kolkata. Why don’t you also save some bucks?
It is not only some 3.3 million cars, but also lack of driving etiquette including wrong side driving, lane indiscipline, blocking free left turns, improper pedestrian movement and less knowledge of indicator lights, that make traffic congestion in Hyderabad a mess. Though Hyderabad has wider roads and fairly good traffic infrastructure, yet disregard for authority, negligible understanding of rules and blatant attitude makes traffic and driving irksome.
Be the Change: Get around Hyderabad by private and state run buses, auto- rickshaws and bikes. Use paid/unpaid shuttle services to reach your work place and help in reducing private car movement.
Driving here is one hell of an affair because roads are way too small and narrow, while main roads are traffic-struck. Rapid industrial influx, incessant migration and inadequate measures to cope with urban expansion are major reasons for Chennai’s bad traffic scenario. Chennai Corporation decided to widen words, create more bus bays, footpaths and subways and amend existing ones to ease the movement of nearly 3.7 million and more vehicles in the city. Locals can look forward to metro rail system that is under construction currently.
Be the Change: Use government public buses, company run shuttle buses and local trains. Consider commuting to work through a car-pool system. If possible, stay near your workplace and cycle/walk down to your office.
Unbelievable but true, Pune has approximately 2.2 million cars, out of which many are unregistered. High urbanization has posed challenges of increasing infrastructure demands, heightened traffic density, fuel usage and high pollution levels in the city. Other major factors like inadequate public transport, congestion in central city, poor roads, mixing of transit travellers, peak hour rush, less by-passes, limited parking space, absence of signage and lack of departmental coordination keep commuters stranded for hours on Pune streets.
Be the Change: With a major chunk of students in Pune, motorbikes is what I can suggest as the most feasible option considering the above factors. State run buses are available at your doorstep too. So, postpone the self drive for a road trip, may be!
Dense traffic, narrow lanes, congested markets and higher number of pedestrians turn Jaipur into one the worst traffic hit cities. With the numbers of registered vehicles growing at a rate of 8.96% every year and reaching up to around 20 lakh, people here are gasping for breath and feel commuting is the most difficult task.
Be the Change: Rajasthan State Roadways buses are the best means of public conveyance to explore Jaipur’s heritage. Make a group and hire a cab if you are going to the same destination. This time around, use CNG instilled auto-rickshaws and eco-friendly cycle rickshaws when visiting the Jaipur Literature Fest and keep the city clean.
As if the pollution from factories and tanneries was not enough, Kanpur’s traffic congestion has only added to the pollution levels. Average speed of a vehicle in the city is around 15.6 kmph, the slowdown of which is caused by pedestrian movement, on street parking, poor roads, slow vehicles, poor traffic management especially on junctions and railway crossings. Southern Kanpur is worst hit by traffic. While the transport department aims to increase parking spaces, develop footpaths, encourage public transport and introduce feeder service, there is a lot that we as citizens can do.
Be the Change: If you are a businessman in Kanpur and going to the same workplace as three or four of your family members, consider going and coming at the same time so you don’t have to take different cars. A little adjustment would mean a better life for you and others! Public buses, cycle-rickshaws and yes, bicycles will just add to the difference you will be making.
The most industrialized city of Punjab, Ludhiana, has unfortunately earned the status of the most polluted and congested city. Traffic congestion caused by damaged traffic lights, ongoing flyover construction work, movement of bullock carts, increased private vehicle (over 12 lakh as of last year) should be dealt as top priority.
Be the Change: Ditch your private cars and take rickshaws for small distances. State owned buses are available in plenty. So get inside those. Trust me, nobody is going to judge you!
My fellow citizens, this blog is only a small attempt at bringing the stark realities to the fore-front. Well, who doesn’t like the comfort of a luxury, chauffer driven car? But this is the time to unite and aim towards a better tomorrow. The #OddEvenFormula is only a small step towards a big change, a healthier living and a hassle-free life. Now you need to decide whether you want to stick to your individual comfort/convenience or be the change for a larger cause.
(With inputs from Bhawna Grover Bagai)