Dimapur: Trial traffic run bodes ominous results

Imlisanen Jamir

Last Friday and Saturday, Dimapur town witnessed one of its worst traffic jams, as vehicle movement came to a crawl across on almost all roads leading in and out of the town. People of the town are looking at this scenario becoming a constant for a very long time, if a more careful traffic plan for Dimapur is not laid out soon.  

The jam was caused by a trial traffic run which was initiated in preparation of what things would look like when the old road over bridge is under renovation works. The bridge, which was built in the 1970s, now appears to be a public danger.

When The Morung Express went to inspect the structure of the over-bridge, the underside of the bridge deck showed visible signs of concrete erosion caused from several decades of usage. The iron rebar used to reinforce the concrete and increase its strength, allowing it to withstand the weight and stress of the bridge's load, was visible in several areas.

The state of the bridge makes it necessary that it is either rebuilt or renovated. The town has had recent history of the real consequences of bridge collapses. To avoid any major mishap like before, the Public Works Department (National Highways) will have to carry out the renovation works, sooner rather than later. This presents a quagmire for the PWD, the police, the administration and the people here. 

For this, the bridge will have to be closed down, and the ensuing traffic nightmare awaits the people of Dimapur. Traffic congestion in Dimapur is not new. With the growing population and increasing numbers of vehicles, the town has been facing this problem for quite some time. And if something similar to what was done in the trial run is put in place, things will take a turn for the worst. 

The trial run, for the Dimapur traffic police themselves, has brought about concerning results. Chokepoints at places like Delux junction, Nagarjan junction, Marwaripatti etc brought the town to a standstill. It appeared to be an impossible task for the traffic police to manage or the traffic, so much so that in some areas the public had to assist them, though this had little effect in easing congestion. 

During the two days trial, personnel were seen manning several areas till late night to manage the traffic, a look of despair on some of their faces—a sight which will become all too familiar if proper plans are not laid out. 

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