Will shift Auto Expo elsewhere if told, say oganisers

Will shift Auto Expo elsewhere if told, say oganisers

A day after massive crowds caused chaos at the prestigious Auto Expo in Pragati Maidan and traffic jams outside, one of the organisers Saturday said they were ready to shift the venue in the future as suggested by Delhi Police.

Reacting to Delhi Police’s suggestion to shift the Auto Expo, the chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) steering committee for the 11th Auto Expo, Rajive Kaul told IANS: “The Delhi Police are responsible for traffic management in the capital and we respect their decision."

"If they tell us to move out of Pragati Maidan, we will.”

“We have other options as well, so it’s not an issue,” he added.

The mega car show is being co-hosted by the CII, Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) and Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA).

Arguing that the Auto Expo alone could not be blamed for the jams as VIP movement at India Gate contributed to the chaos as well, Kaul said they are working closely with the police.

“We always work closely with the Delhi Police during such important events and will continue to do so,” said Kaul, citing "fruitful coordination" during the 2010 show despite several constructions going on in Delhi ahead of the Commonwealth Games.

Delhi Traffic Police Saturday said that in future no-objection certificates (NOC) may not be given to hold events like the Auto Expo in the heart of the city.

"Maybe, Pragati Maidan is not the place to hold an event like the Auto Expo. Maybe, the traffic police should refuse NOC for future events like this," Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Satyendra Garg posted on the force's Facebook page, which has more than 90,000 followers.

The Auto Expo coupled with some VIP movements at India Gate Friday evening led to chaos for hours as traffic spilled over to nearby roads in central Delhi. The evening rush hour added to the woes of commuters as the roads were choc-a-bloc with vehicles, that crawled at snail's pace.

According to police, areas most affected were all hexagons of India Gate, the congested ITO crossing, Connaught Place, Mandi House and the Sardar Patel Marg. Even a distant Barapulla flyover suffered traffic jams.

Garg admitted that the traffic management was also shoddy.

"There can be no excuses for traffic congestion, it was a bad show on our part. We could have managed the difficult situation much better," said Garg.

"I am aware of the extreme difficulties people had to go through in the evening, particularly around India Gate and all roads around it. We promise to do better in similar circumstances," added Garg.


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