Horn ‘Not OK’ Please: Silent zones under Bengaluru Metro tracks

Bengaluru: Residents, shopkeepers and establishment owners living near Metro rail tracks, stations and even under it face a daily nuisance of constant honking by motorists. To tackle the menace, the city traffic police are planning silent zones along these stretches. On Traffic Awareness Week, which began on July 1 and ends July 7, traffic police are planning to create awareness among motorists to maintain silence while driving under Metro rail tracks and near stations.

A senior police officer from the traffic department told DC, “We had observed that honking echoes and is a constant source of irritation for residents, shopkeepers and businessmen near and under the tracks and stations. We asked them if honking disturbed them, they replied that they were living with it as they did not have any avenues to raise a complaint. The staff at the Ulsoor police station immediately chalked out a plan to create awareness by creating ‘silent zones’ near Metro stations and under the tracks.”

He said, “We will involve school students and ask them to hold placards from Swami Vivekananda Metro station to Trinity Circle Metro station. Initially, we want to create awareness and later, we hope permanent silent zones will be declared across the city wherever Metro tracks are passing. People should stand under these tracks for five minutes and listen to the echo of honking. It is deafening. It is a good initiative by the Ulsoor traffic police and we will discuss about it with senior officers and department concerned to ensure that the rule is passed.”

Shama Rao, who owns a fancy store under the Metro station on CMH Road, said, “Motorists keep honking and the echo lingers for a long time. At times, motorists with modified silencers zip past and the sound is unbearable. This gives us constant headaches. We are living with the problem. People should come out and explain their situation until then it will persist. Motorists who honk should be made to stand under these tracks and stations and let them know how it feels. It is not only about bringing rules, but people should have the basic sense.”

A traffic police inspector, who did not want to be identified, said, “The plan is in preliminary stages and our personnel are working on it. This problem that is not highlighted is a huge menace to the public. The awareness campaign should get the attention of senior officers of all departments and the common man. We will also write to Metro officials seeking permission to put Silent Zone boards on Metro pillars.”

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