Traffic violations on the rise in Kullu Manali valley

Kullu: In spite of tough rules laid down to contain and traffic chaos and road accidents, drivers are not paying heed to obey these traffic rules which has nudged the police administration to confront the problem and curb the menace.

The Kullu valley, known for its charming natural beauty and being an internationally famed tourists destination, sees a heavy influx of tourist vehicles each year, especially in peak season. This has been causing traffic chaos leading to choking of the Kullu-Manali highway for hours at a go due to idle parking, wrong driving.

Amari Thakur, president Kullu auto union passing the blame onto irresponsible pedestrians said,  “It is not because of increasing number of tourist vehicles that is causing hindrances in regulating traffic but here sometimes even pedestrian violate the rules, which is a cause of concern because it is the responsibility of every citizen to obey the rules.”

Traffic jam near Solang Valley, Manali
Traffic jam near Solang Valley, Manali

When we at Hill Post contacted deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Kullu, Sanjay Sharma over the issue, he said, “Police is doing its best to handle the problem by imposing stiff traffic rules so as  to avoid any inconvenience to the public, the flowing traffic and to reduce chances of accidents occurring that could happen because of disobeying traffic rules or wrong driving.”

Growing number of vehicles was adding to the traffic burden on the roads, which are not developed to handle such large volumes,” said Sharma

During tourist season more than 7000 vehicles ply on the Kullu-Manali highway, many of them headed to the high Rohtang Pass. This heavy flow causes traffic snarls and to control the situation we do deploy police personnel  at vital points. Equipped with modern equipment’s to detect drunken driving, over speeding and other violation of traffic rules, the police is doing its best to regulate traffic, said the district police officer.

Data available with Hill Post reveals that in 2013  the police booked (challaned) 44,596 vehicles and collected fine as a sum of Rs 77.27 lakhs from them. In  2014, the number of vehicles fined for wrongful driving or other traffic related offences increased to 69,565 vehicles and fine collected rose to Rs 97.14 lakhs.

Where in 2013, the number of road accidents in entire Kullu district was 176, in which 81 lives were lost and 314 people sustained injuries, in 2014 a total of 166 accidents were recorded, in which 63 lost their lives and another 166 were injured.

Photo by: Renuka Gautam

A theater artist, a script writer and a TV anchor, news is something that grips Renuka. She lives in Kullu.

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