Transport minister Nitin Gadkari has directed National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to prepare a work plan to make the entire stretch from Mother Teresa Crescent up to the starting point of Gurgaon expressway signal-free.
The decision comes after the minister’s car got stuck on the Gurgaon-Mahipalpur flyover just outside Delhi, which leads to the airport, for nearly two hours.
Gadkari said the Centre will work with the Delhi government to solve the traffic jam problem.
“We are studying the traffic of Delhi and the report will come to me in 15 days. We will identify the black spots of Delhi and also inform the Delhi government,” he said.
On social media, people tweeted that they hoped the minister’s ordeal would lead to the changes that are desperately needed to improve traffic in the area.
@nitin_gadkari need to rework the exits and entries to delhi -Gurgaon highway, not expressway+impose tough traffic rules and right of way.
— Rohit Bhalla (@biusnews) December 8, 2015
Traffic unbelievable 2.30hrs from gurgaon to Def. colony same amount of time to get home. Wonder if it’s worth going out for lunch to Delhi — Miecckey Bharucha (@miecckey) December 8, 2015
— Jaspreet Bindra (@j_bindra) December 8, 2015
After reportedly getting furious over the massive jam, he spoke to officers of the NHAI. He also called a meeting of all authorities concerned.
“I assure you that within a year and a half, the traffic jams in Delhi will be reduced by half. Delhi’s pollution will also be reduced,” Mr Gadkari told reporters.
The Delhi-Gurgaon stretch has always been a nightmare for the commuters, particularly those travelling from Delhi towards Gurgaon. Long queues could be seen from Rajokri to the toll plaza, the Udyog Vihar U-turn and Cyber Hub during morning hours as well in the evening.
Amid this chaos, many commuters have to miss their flights, important meetings, and ambulances are often caught in the traffic jam. Cars could be seen moving on pavements.
To solve this persistent traffic problem, the Haryana government has earlier proposed decongesting two major roads that link Delhi and Gurgaon — Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway and MG Road – by carving out three new routes.
The NCR Planning Board (NCRPB) plans to connect the Northern Peripheral Road (NPR), also called the Dwarka Expressway, with Dwarka in Delhi. This will divert a significant volume of Gurgaon-bound traffic from west Delhi.
As per the Economic Survey of Delhi 2014-15, the total number of motor vehicles on road in the capital as on March 31, 2015 was 88.27 lakh, showing a rise of 6.4 per cent over the previous year. However, the road network of Delhi has increased from 32,131 lane km in 2007-08 to just 33,198 lane km in 2014-15.