Agartala: In a bid to ensure that traffic violators, especially those riding two-wheelers, reach their destination safely, the traffic police in Tripura have come out with a unique initiative.
As part of the programme undertaken to celebrate this year’s ‘road safety week’, the traffic police will not only challan violators but will also hand out helmets to them. These helmets will be on offer at 20 ‘helmet banks’ that have been set up at traffic assistance booths across the capital city of Agartala.
These helmets will be offered to violators only for a limited period of time and will have to be returned to the booths. However, ‘repeat offenders’ (two-wheeler riders who have violated traffic more than three times) will be forced to purchase the helmet at rates fixed by the government. “This is a one-of-a-kind initiative in the entire Northeast region as per my knowledge," said Pinaki Samanta, SP (traffic), West Tripura
“We often fine motorcycle riders who ride without wearing helmets. But this doesn’t solve the problem; people end up meeting accidents. Hence, we have initiated this drive to provide them a helmet along with the challan so that they can reach their destination safely. Once he gets his own helmet, he has to return the helmets to the booth,” he added.
As per Samanta, even if a single traffic assistance booth manages to hand out 50 helmets a day, the number will be 18,000 in a year for that booth. “This way, we will be able to provide over 3,60,000 helmets each year. Even if we are able to save one life, the motive behind the idea would be successful,” he said.
Meanwhile, the traffic department has also processed a file for developing a mobile application so that citizens can be a part of it and help in keeping the roads safer. Through this app, a maximum of 50 pictures of traffic violations can be sent in a single day.
Residents will receive an amount of Rs 10 for every single picture that he or she sends through the app. "We can then use this to impose penalties on violators. However the pictures need to be clear and show the number plates on the vehicles. Only then we can proceed further. Once the penalty is received, the percentage of share would be transferred to the citizen’s account directly,” Samanta added.
However, the department is awaiting for the government’s approval for the app.