Controversy Surrounds Proposed Divider Construction between Chandani Chowk and Bavdhan as Commuters and Activists Raise Concerns

The proposed construction of a divider on the road between Chandani Chowk and Bavdhan has ignited a heated debate between commuters and the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). With the city already grappling with severe traffic issues, opinions differ on whether the divider would alleviate or exacerbate the congestion problem. The 2-kilometer stretch has long been plagued by traffic congestion, inadequate divider markings, and a narrow roadway.

The PMC recently obtained permission from the traffic department to proceed with the divider construction. However, commuters and activists argue that this decision will only worsen the existing traffic situation in the heavily congested area.

Chenthil Iyer, the head of a political party’s public transport wing, voiced his concerns regarding the potential narrowing of the road due to the divider construction. He emphasized, “This will create chaos for daily commuters and pedestrians alike. The PMC road department should halt the construction immediately as the divider appears unnecessary and poorly planned. Moreover, the improper marking of the divider line has resulted in unequal road areas on each side.”

Dushyant Bhatia, an IT professional and a regular commuter on the Chandani Chowk-Kothrud route, echoed similar sentiments. He stated, “The road is already narrow, and traffic congestion occurs during peak hours. Constructing a divider will further clog the road. Furthermore, the incorrect marking of the divider, with one side shorter and the other wider, inconveniences drivers on the left and compromises their safety. Authorities should rectify the alignment issue or reconsider the necessity of a divider altogether.”

Supriya Vaidya, another daily commuter, highlighted the potential risks associated with the proposed divider construction. She pointed out, “The divider will only worsen the situation on this already narrow stretch. Pedestrians often cross the road without caution, and the divider will force them to jump over it, increasing the risk of accidents. Moreover, reckless driving is common at night, making it difficult to see oncoming vehicles. Instead of a divider, we need a better transportation solution for this road.”

In contrast, a junior engineer from the PMC road department defended the decision, claiming that the divider was being constructed in response to public demand and after receiving approval from the traffic department. While acknowledging some land acquisition issues hindering road widening in the narrow portion of the stretch, the engineer emphasized the necessity of the divider for commuter safety, given the prevalence of reckless driving habits.

Residents are urging the authorities to reconsider the decision to construct the divider, taking into account the narrowness of the road. They have also called upon the PMC to address the improper marking of the divider line, ensuring the safety and convenience of all road users.

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