Despite government plans and directions, the failure of the concerned authorities to effectively implement them is one of the major reasons for several persisting problems facing the public, as in the case of unending traffic congestion in major market areas of Imphal city.
In the effort to ease traffic congestion in the capital market areas, the Manipur government had issued parking restrictions along the stretch of Paona and Thangal Bazaar areas.
However, vehicle owners have once again started parking their vehicles along the stretch, where they do not have to pay the parking fees, instead of using the allotted parking space.
The government order passed on April 7 for the convenience of commuters and pedestrians imposed restrictions on parking along the market stretch for not more than five minutes.
In the order issued earlier, it was mentioned that owners of shops and residents along the Paona Bazaar should park their vehicles behind Johnstone Higher Secondary School, while those in Thangal Bazaar should park their vehicles in the public parking space built above Naga Nullah.
Before the issue of the said order, Chief Minister N Biren Singh had posted a video in his Facebook page mentioning the congested traffic scenario along the market stretch.
Following the government order, Imphal West district police along with the traffic police wing were on strict vigil for the next two-three days. However, at present, no Imphal West police or traffic personnel could be seen along the stretch on duty dispersing the vehicles that are parked for more than five minutes.
Moreover, allegedly due to the government order, parking ticket collectors along Paona and Thangal bazaar stretch are not seen. And apparently, taking advantage of the ineffective government orders, commuters have started parking their vehicles along both the market stretches as per their conveniences.
The government order was issued to ease traffic congestion, but due to the ineffective action of the Manipur police, traffic congestion in the Paona and Thangal market areas has almost doubled now and one can see that traffic police are rarely seen taking action along the market stretches.
Besides, some of the automobile workshops are utilising the roadsides amid the ineffective action of the police which are also causing huge traffic congestion for commuters as well as for the pedestrians.
When this Imphal Free Press reporter visited the market areas, traffic police could be seen. However, they were seen busy restricting the commuters only to one-way entry violators.
After the shopkeepers along the Paona Bazar stretch demonstrated a protest by shutting down all the shops in protest against the government order issued on April 7, the one way entrance was altered from south to north.
Due to the ineffective order of the state government, pedestrians and commuters are still facing the same problem of traffic congestion along both the stretches.
Meanwhile, due to multiple parking at the secretariat area, Babupara, Imphal, commuters are also facing a harrowing time due to the major traffic congestion.
And interestingly, it is the police that are seen causing traffic congestion with multiple parking of their vehicles. Earlier, the traffic police had put a ‘No Parking’ beyond the signboard in Babupara area, but the signboards are hardly to be seen anywhere.
So, despite the government orders, traffic congestion issues continue to rule the day with no one giving heed to orders and one has to only ask, ‘What’s happened to the government orders on traffic and parking?’.