S KAMAT, ALTO ST CRUZ
Generally Goans tend to respect authority. However, the respect for authority should not be overly done is what we should all remember and also bring home to the Director General of Police (DGP) in relation to the traffic sentinel scheme. The intentions of any policy measure, however honourable it may be, have to be backed by proper and judicious procedures for achieving the objectives. It is not that for achieving the honourable objectives you create many nuisances along the way because of the procedures. Then it is best to review these procedures. So also is the case with the traffic sentinel scheme where the objectives are laudable, that of promoting safe driving and traffic and to bring down the accident and fatality rate arising out of traffic accidents, though whether the scheme by itself can bring about all this is debatable. The equipment deployed to check traffic violations around Bengaluru consists of adaptive smart cameras that adjust traffic signal timings depending on traffic density, interceptor cameras capable of reading number plates for speeding and jumping signal offences, 360 degrees tilt and zoom cameras for overall traffic monitoring in real-time and on-body cameras to record drunk driving interceptions. Some 1,000 cameras like these have been installed around the city and these are being supplemented by another 350 cameras shortly. With the use of such automated equipment, Bengaluru traffic offences have from 90.99 lakh in 2016 that rose to 99.22 lakh in 2017 dropped to 89.74 lakh in 2018. Ninety per cent of these offences are recorded automatically and only 10 per cent manually. We can learn from this and as a first step install traffic signals at all important intersections across Goa followed by television cameras which is an impartial and acceptable method of traffic control than the improperly conceived traffic sentinel scheme.