Traffic lights sans rhyme or reason

Stop says the red light, go says the green. Get ready says the amber light, blinking in between ' this is a rhyme that pre-nursery children of the capital can teach traffic police and state road construction department.

Traffic lights have gone crazy in the capital that looks all set to become a leading sports hub of the east. Back-to-back events such as the ODI, Hockey India League matches and the upcoming Celebrity Cricket League means that VIP tourist and media traffic to the city has increased.

But traffic lights ' there are around 10 signal posts in the city ' seem satisfied with just working. There is no need to work in sync.

"When it glows, it keeps on glowing," said a lady traffic constable deputed at Sarjana Chowk. On Tuesday around 11am, she was huffing and puffing to ease off traffic as the amber light on both the posts were glowing simultaneously.

"These are ghostly lights," she said. "We can't leave commuters on their own."

The problem got rectified on its own after a few minutes. Seemed the ghosts were tired of their pranks.

The pranks that the lights play are numerous. Green and amber lights blink together. Green switches over to red before commuters from one way can cross over. The amber light, which gives time to clear off the in-between traffic, does not work most of the time.

"Sudden problems develop, causing the worst traffic snarls," said dentist Vishal Bhagat, who narrowly escaped collision with a bike on Monday evening when the green signal at Jail More turned red before time. "Traffic lights at Radium Road, Ratu Road and Jail often show waiting time. But when the time is not shown, the red light keeps on glowing longer than the green."

When contacted, traffic superintendent of police Chandrashekhar Prasad did not beat about the bush.

"All the traffic lights are faulty. I do not even remember the number of times we have given written complaints to the authorities concerned regarding the problem. It seems our requests have fallen on deaf ears," he said.

Proper servicing of traffic signals was last done in 2011 when the state had called in a Bangalore-based firm.

State road construction department executive engineer Umesh Kumar Sinha, in charge of monitoring the installation and maintenance of traffic lights, said he had conducted a review meeting "just four days ago".

"I was not told of any problem. Servicing of many traffic lights is going on based on prior complaints," he said.

He excused problems saying they might have occurred due to solar panels not getting properly charged due to "cloudy weather". When reminded that Monday was sunny, not cloudy, Singh quickly replied: "I need to re-check with the people servicing the lights."

With traffic police blaming the state department and the latter's official blaming the vagaries of weather, everyday is chaos for commuters, pedestrians and constables. From traffic snarls to road rage to accidents, crazy lights trigger serious lawlessness.

There are other offbeat problems too.

Crayons Montessori School on Kanke Road has put off its Traffic Week project for pre-nursery students simply because the cradle administration can't find a single properly functioning set of traffic lights for a live demo.

School vice-principal Vandana said they taught children the rhyme about traffic lights. "But road reality doesn't rhyme with the rhyme," she rued.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Punjab pull off another big chase

Punjab pull off another big chase

GAME 7, SHARJAH—Maxwell, Miller, Pujara chase down Rajasthan's 192. More »

Royal test for Kings

Royal test for Kings

Preview — Clash of philosophies between Australia-centric teams More »

Have nothing to prove to anybody — Sehwag

Have nothing to prove to anybody — Sehwag

The Nawab of Najafgarh says a good run in IPL could help his chances of a comeback on India's tour to England in June. More »

Shastri in proposed IPL probe panel

Shastri in proposed IPL probe panel

Some members stressed on the need for proposing names with an "impeccable record and clean image". More »

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Furious fifties by Duminy and Dinesh Karthik end a long losing streak for the Daredevils. More »

Five things England must do to bounce back

Five things England must do to bounce back

England have appointed a new head coach in Peter Moores. More »

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

Royal Challengers overcame a stutter to cruise to the small target they were set by Mumbai Indians. More »

‘Felt like helpless minority’

‘Felt like helpless minority’

Former BCCI treasurer Ajay Shirke says emotions got the better of Srinivasan and he tried to oversimplify things by calling Meiyappan an “enthusiast.” More »

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

His status as president of TNCA makes him eligible to attend the Working Committee meeting on Sunday. More »

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

Kevin Pietersen's hopes of reviving his international career appeared to end Saturday when ECB managing director Paul Downton said there was 'no way back'… More »

The world record that nearly wasn't

The world record that nearly wasn't

Twenty years ago this week, Brian Lara became Test cricket's highest scorer, but he almost didn't make it. More »

Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell seems to project an icy disdain when at the crease. Match situations rarely faze him and the bubble in which he plays excludes everyone … More »

Moores gets second stint as coach

Moores gets second stint as coach

In a two-year spell from 2007 to 2009, the 51-year-old Moores led England in seven Test series. More »

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh's senior players will have three sessions with a psychological skill development coach later this month More »

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

Dalmiya feels that Srinivasan’s ‘power hungry’ attitude isn’t helping matters. More »

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

The 36-year-old believes the T20 format and rule changes in 50-over matches have made a real difference. More »

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

BCCI members want independent probe

BCCI members want independent probe

The board members are realising after the Supreme Court's observations that something has to be done — IS Bindra More »

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Preview — The threat of Sunil Narine looms large again. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Preview — Given the firepower in both line-ups, Dubai crowd may see another high-scorer More »

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »