Bengaluru: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah may have hurried to open the alternate road to the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) recently, but it is not attracting much traffic as yet in the absence of adequate streetlighting. Many passengers continue to opt for the Ballari Road via Hebbal junction to get to the airport.
An air passenger, Mallikarjuna Sai, of Hennur Bande, who took the road recently, recounts his experience. “A couple of days ago, I landed at the airport and the cab driver took me through the new route. But I found there was no proper streetlighting and it was unsafe especially for women travellers during the night.
When I asked the driver why he took the route, he replied it was shorter and he could avoid paying the toll,” he recalled. Ms Kalpana Sundar, a resident of Ashok Nagar too had a similar experience when she arrived at KIA around midnight. On taking the cab that took her through the new road, she was scared as there were not many people or vehicles on the stretch. “I couldn’t spot even one police patrolling vehicle. So we still prefer the usual road from KIA. There is so much work still to be done on the new stretch, especially fixing of streetlights,” she noted.
A cab driver, Ashok Kumar too says that passengers still prefer the Ballari road via Hebbal junction to the airport as they find the new road unsafe. “But we take the new route as we can avoid paying the toll and because there is not much traffic. However, we too feel at times that it is deserted and scary, especially at night. Things could change if there were more police,” he suggested. Going by a traffic police officer around 10,000 vehicles ply on the road currently and once the work is completed, over 25,000 are expected.
“We have contacted the concerned department to complete the work and they have promised to have it done within a month,” he assured.
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