High stakes gambling on the OMR

If you are the gambling kind, how high would you be willing to go in placing a bet? Chances are you will set a limit of risk beyond which you dare not venture because there’s too much at stake. Not on the OMR. Here what is placed on the table is your life, or other’s, whether you’re a gambler or not. For the state of the road has driven the already indisciplined traffic round the bend.

The traffic flows on either side of the dividers, depending on the state of the road, or the whim of the drivers. It doesn’t matter if you are in your lane, and heading down the motorable part of it. You will suddenly see motorbikes or cars coming at you with wild abandon. With absolutely no caution, let up in speed or conscious of the fact that they are on the wrong side of the road.

Both two wheelers and cars will come right at you, depending on you to stop or move out of the way. It doesn’t matter if that means you are pushed into giant pot holes. If you don’t, there will be a collision and someone will get hurt, leave alone the vehicles damaged. It’s a finely tuned form of blackmail, where you become responsible for their safety. The kings of the road, of course, are the buses and trucks which drive rough shod over these roads.

The police are not much in evidence along the road, only at major junctions. One really cannot fault them, for the state of the road is causing people to take these diversions to save the wear and tear on their vehicles and, indeed, their bodies (With all the jolting and spine jarring holes in the road). So one can’t blame the drivers and riders either, except for the lack of caution or consideration for others going through the same fate (Not surprising given that the one thing we lack as a city is civic sense, and consideration for fellow citizens).

It’s the city father’s who have to take responsibility. For I suspect the condition of the road now falls between two stools. The Chennai Corporation (or the Highways Dept) would have handed over the road to ITEL, the nodal body building the IT Corridor (at snail’s pace). So they aren’t going to do anything about them. ITEL’s view is we are going to be developing it anyway, so what’s the point of repairing the road at this point? The point is that hundreds of thousands of people use this road everyday to go to and from work. And the state of the road is endangering their lives and well being in many ways.

Once again, I wish there could be a sense of responsibility or accountability for someone in Government who would look at the state of affairs and say, “No this is not right!”, and do something about it. Perhaps some one responsible for the city administration -like Stalin who seems involved and concerned. In the meantime, if you have to venture down the OMR, proceed with caution. And be prepared to gamble with your life.

4 Comments so far

  1. bejharboy (unregistered) on November 17th, 2006 @ 3:12 pm

    Wont it help if the IT companies on the OMR form a consortium involving key residential complexes as well, and go with a referendum to Govt, with suggestions to improve this stretch. I know for sure that digging up goes way long back when A.R.Rehman gave a concert near Tidel Park some 5 years ago. Its not that Stalin is unaware of this area at all. He di nothing when he was Mayor nor when is the Minister now.

  2. david appasamy (unregistered) on November 17th, 2006 @ 6:11 pm

    There has been a fair amount of interaction with the It and other industries when they planned the IT Corridor. Government had meetings with, and made presentations to CII and the IT companies about the plans for the OMR. The plans are terrific- only they need to be executed. What we are caught in is the interim between the plans and making them a reality.

  3. AB (unregistered) on November 18th, 2006 @ 10:52 pm

    David, I read your blogs and I am frustrated about the situation. I completely empathize and can imagine how frustrated you guys using OMR would be. I am shocked the City is completely inert to such things. Why the heck can’t they just finish the job!

  4. Rajesh (unregistered) on November 20th, 2006 @ 9:37 pm

    A viable & quick solution for this is – all the employees working in all the IT companies should get together and BOYCOTT working on a single day. No work. Just gather on the road and strike. The loss will be HUGE, the IT companies will fix the road by itself. BUT as you all know Indians are never united they are always divided. United they can get solution for anything, divided they cannot even _ _ _ _.

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