Friday, June 5, 2009

My personal protest

A funny thing happened to me the other day. Kantipath is partitioned down the middle with cinder blocks and rope. There are however 2 breaks in this partition, presumably allowing drivers to make u-turns when necessary. Not so! I took a u-turn on one of these spots a few days ago. Out darted a traffic police who was waiting to pounce. He told me that a u-turn was not allowed there. I protested that there was no sign indicating this prohibition. He shrugged off my protests and said that u-turns hamper the flow of traffic and are therefore not allowed. Mind you, my u-turn was a complete turn (no need for backing) and I was all set to head in the other direction.

So I had a few choices: (a) just ignore the policeman and drive on - this proved unfeasible because he stood in front of my car demanding my license; (b) run over the clueless man - not advisable since I do value my SUV; (c) lock my car and just walk away. Now, in retrospect, I should have opted for (c) but in the heat of the moment, I simply flung my license at his righteous face and drove off. Had to retrieve my license from the police station after paying a "fine" of Rs. 200.

"Law and order", "politics of impunity" and such other terms are bandied about freely these days. What law was that policeman enforcing? And did he not get away with impunity? Anyway, I plan to take the same u-turn today. This time I shall go with Option (c), making sure that my vehicle blocks all traffic.

So if you see a traffic jam on Kantipath, you know what happened. It won't be the comrades "struggling in the streets", just me exercising my democratic right to protest the lack of proper traffic regulations and signs in this beloved capital of ours.


Govind said...

Hi Horatio,maybe you could exercise option`d`that is fling Rs 200 at the policeman!

HORATIO said...

Absolutely, Govind, that would have done it. But where will bribery stop, if we don't cut it off at the micro level!
And your valid comment speaks volumes on the professionalism of the traffic police specifically and all those who are supposed to keep us safe and sound.

Anonymous said...

Fully support you on taking the option 'C' The rule of the country ia 'Might is Right" Whoever creates maximum chaos gets his way!