Beat generation

Of late, traffic policing is perceived as an exercise in penalising as the personnel are reduced to mere fine collectors positioned at random spots. Traffic personnel face the wrath of Bengalureans with complaints abound against rude policing.

In the last few months, there have been instances of motorists assaulting traffic police personnel and vehicle towing staff over minor scuffles.

Now, as though taking note of the aforementioned, city traffic police have decided to undergo an image makeover of sorts by organising ‘people-friendly initiatives’.

For the first time since inception, city traffic police are switching over to the beat system so as to work better with Bengalureans and make roads in the city safer.

The new system is going to change the way citizens perceive traffic policing and they shall feel safe while being around or talking to the personnel, the cops say. In a field-oriented approach, the traffic police will not only be seen implementing traffic rules, but will interact more with the public to address issues concerning the free flow of traffic and safety of motorists.

To ensure safe passage to pedestrians as well as motorists, beat traffic police personnel shall take note of accidents and congestion spots, lack of street-lighting, broken footpaths, CCTV cameras, potholes and the like and report to civic agencies.

East DCP (traffic) KM Shantharaju said the pilot project kicked off with the east division following the new system starting last week.

“Frazer Town, Whitefield and Adugodi traffic police stations are following the new system. This is public and field-oriented policing where every constable and head constable are assigned certain roads and streets in jurisdictions. They shall keep constant vigil and visit the areas often. They shall interact with the public to understand inconveniences and help raise and solve the issues. This will not only make the personnel empowered, but hold them accountable which is much needed at the moment,” Shantharaju told BM.

Traffic joint commissioner Ravikanthe Gowda reiterated that this initiative was taken up to make policing people-friendly and empower the traffic police.

This is public and field-oriented policing where every constable and head constable are assigned certain roads and streets in jurisdictions… Frazer Town, Whitefield and Adugodi traffic police stations are following the new system…


– KM Shantharaju, DCP, East (traffic)

“We are adapting to the beat system of law and order, and are empowering our constables who will take up responsibilities of their jurisdictions, keeping a tab on

everything in respective areas. They will interact with the public and gather feedback. They have been asked to report the lack of street lights, broken footpaths, CCTV cameras, potholes and such to the civic agencies to get the issues resolved, apart from scouting for traffic congestion spots and dealing with accidents,” Gowda told Mirror.

A traffic constable on the beat said earlier he would stand at junctions managing traffic while now he is more alert and keen to find out the reasons behind slow moving traffic and think of solutions: “In our jurisdiction, there’s a small lane where there is always heavy traffic. I walked along the lane a couple of times observing vehicle movement, speaking to motorists and pedestrians. Due to the broken footpath, pedestrians were walking onto the lane affecting traffic movement. There were no street lights in one particular stretch. There were potholes as well. I reported to the station inspector stating that these issues were affecting traffic movement in the area. The department would work with civic agencies to resolve the issues at the earliest.”

A senior officer felt the mission is turning into a community effort where traffic police are hearing concerns of the public and standing with them to resolve issues together.

“Most of the traffic cops are now interacting more with the public to know what is happening in their area. The public seems enthusiastic too while interacting and reporting issues to us. We are taking suggestions from the public to improve our ways. We are taking note of traffic congestion areas and have already altered dividers.

Even the minor accidents in the station limits are under our watch now as compared to the past where most of it went unreported. The constable in charge of the area would interact with families and help them further,” he said.

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Sagar Biswas

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