Rs 600-cr Bus Rapid Transit System corridor awaits repair in Amritsar

Faulty design and missing grills at several points often lead to mishaps

Rs 600-cr Bus Rapid Transit System corridor awaits repair in Amritsar

Reflectors to warn commuters and other traffic-monitoring gadgets are missing on the corridor.

Charanjit Singh Teja

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 16

The design of the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS), stated to be a faulty one, has been triggering accidents amid infrastructural shortcomings on a regular basis. On September 18, a youth lost his life when he was allegedly run over by a BRTS bus near the Golden Gate area.

The authorities appear to have failed to conduct maintenance and install reflectors to avoid accidents.

Started in 2016, the multi-crore BRTS project has been lacking maintenance and remained neglected. The project is worth Rs 600 crore, but the lanes don’t appear to justify the colossal amount invested in construction as they are in pathetic condition at many points, say residents, adding that poor planning and usage of substandard material has done most of the damage to its infrastructure.

The grills installed alongside the corridors are also missing from several locations. For officials, drug addicts are the usual suspects. Some broken grills, too, are lying on the road leading to accidents. The reflectors and other traffic infrastructure are also missing.

Most of the accidents happen when commuters on the main road fail to recognise the starting point of the corridor.

In 2019, a committee constituted by the state government had identified nine black spots on the 31-km-long BRTS corridor.After the study, traffic experts had written to the Public Works Department to take appropriate action to prevent accidents, but the latter is yet to act.

Black spots had been identified at Bhandari Bridge, BRTS station outside the railway station, Valmiki Chowk, Putligarh Chowk, Civil Hospital, Ramtalai Chowk, Husainpura Chowk, Mall Mandi Chowk and Alpha Mall.

Experts claimed that lack of proper signage, reflectors and other safety infrastructure led to accidents on the BRTS corridor.

Gopala Dhawan, a traffic expert, who studied the accident patterns in the BRTS lanes, said the authorities should install reflectors and signage of no entry of other vehicles and a dedicated bus lane on every entry point. “Such signage is missing on the route. Secondly, the authorities have to educate the commuters and city residents about the rules and risks,” he added.

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