A pat on the back
One often hears of Bangalore Traffic Police booking cases against those who don’t follow traffic rules. One also hears complaints about the traffic police harassing those who have committed minor violations. But now, the traffic police have taken a welcome move by rewarding those who follow the traffic rules properly.
They have joined hands with Children’s Movement for Civic Awareness (CMCA), an NGO, to identify people who follow the rules and reward them accordingly. The authorities say this is a case of positive reinforcement and they believe that this would inspire more people to adhere to traffic rules.
Sharing his thoughts on the initiative, B Dayananda, additional commissioner of police (traffic), says, “The team of volunteers from the NGO will spend quality time at the Traffic Management Centre, monitoring the screens to identify people who exhibit good behaviour on the road and follow the rules.”
He adds, “These include people who respect pedestrians, don’t jump signal lights, wear the prescribed helmet and seat belt while driving. We will zero in on such people, look up their records for any history of violations. If he or she has no violation against their name, they will be awarded with a certificate and a sticker.”
The initiative recently identified 320 people in the City and after an extensive process of filtration, 200 people were awarded. Anusha Jaishankar, honorary road safety programme coordinator, CMCA says the team surveyed 150 signal junctions before arriving at a conclusion. “This is an initiative that is aimed at the youth because this will impact them in a positive way and they will spread awareness among the people. The volunteers are aged between 14 years and 32 years who also happen to be road users,” she reasons. She further states that they plan to identify and award people at least four times a year.
Motorists have always seen the harsh side of traffic cops but they seem thrilled with the latest initiative. They say that this will go a long way in instilling a sense of discipline in the road user. Sivaraman Ramasamy, an employee with Titan and one of the awardees of ‘Positive Strokes’, says, “Such initiatives bring out the positive side of people instead of inducing negativity. This will certainly inspire and encourage more people to follow traffic rules and inculcate in them a better driving sense,” he says.
Raghunandana R, a professional, who received the award, thinks that this initiative is a step forward in forcing people to adhere to traffic rules. “We always see people being caught for jumping signals and punished for various offences but a pat on the back of those who follow the traffic rules will inspire many to follow suit,” reasons Raghunandana.
Sharing a woman’s perspective, Jayanti Bhattacharya, a designer feels the ‘Positive Strokes’ campaign is a morale booster. “If this is consistently followed over the next two years, I would be proud to sport a ‘Good Road User’ sticker on my vehicle which is a badge for being a responsible citizen,” she sums up.