More cops needed to man traffic on Islamabad Expressway

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ISLAMABAD: The absence of policemen on Islamabad Expressway in the past few days has resulted in regular severe traffic jams during peak hours.

Many commuters who work in Islamabad but live in suburb areas of the twin cities face traffic problems twice a day due to insufficient traffic wardens who could control the situation.

According to the details, traffic has been continuously being blocked from Khanna-Bridge to Faizabad section of Islamabad Expressway in the morning for the last few days where no traffic wardens are seen and the Islamabad Traffic Police (ITP) has virtually turned a blind eye to this traffic mess.

Lane division is also being exploited by passenger-hungry van drivers who criss-cross between the lanes to earn more profit. It has been observed that public transport vans repeatedly violate and jumps from one lane to another lane especially after seeing the passengers.

No doubt, the five lane-Islamabad expressway is a good track but the silence of authorities on lane violation is posing serious threats to the road users. The problem is mainly arising due to the apparent absence of personnel of ITP as no policeman has even observed to check this road violation on this particular stretch during peak hours.

“Extra deployment of policemen is necessary to instruct the motorists to follow the lanes,” said a citizen Zaheer who takes a daily shuttle from Model Town Humak to Blue Area where his office is located.

When contacted, an ITP police official said that there are 631 personnel in ITP at present which is not a sufficient amount and an additional strength of 3,000 policemen is required to run the traffic-related issues effectively.

He also said that a few years back, there were limited sectors in Islamabad but now the number of vehicles have increased along with the expanding sectors and that has added to traffic problems.

Replying to a question about traffic jams on the expressway for the last few days, he said it might be due to rainy weather but efforts would be made to ensure smooth traffic flow by the deployment of more traffic personnel.

He told that he along with high officials of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) and police had visited the various roads of the city in January and considered the option of widening various roads to avoid traffic congestion there.

The source said that he was hopeful of an improvement in the situation in the coming days.