Two-wheelers riders undisciplined, say Dadar Parsi Colony residents

Updated: Aug 13, 2019, 08:28 IST | Hemal Ashar

Parsi Colony, where a child was killed, say they had written to the local police about the dangers of speeding bikers in their bylanes

Two-wheelers riders undisciplined, say Dadar Parsi Colony residents
Afreen Rabadi was killed in a mishap at Dadar on 12th August

Just five days before the tragic mishap that killed Afreen Rabadi, 8, at Dadar Parsi Colony on Sunday, the Mancherji Edalji Joshi Colony Residents Association had written to the Assistant Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Sion, and Senior Inspector Matunga, citing serious concerns about vehicular movement within the tree-lined colony and nearby areas.

In the wake of Sunday morning's motorbike accident that killed Afreen Rabadi, the one-page letter urging authorities to monitor two-wheelers seems painfully prescient. "Two-wheelers are the most indisciplined drivers on the road, breaking every law possible. They have no respect for pedestrians. Under-age boys and girls are frequently riding without helmets, probably without a licence too. Sometimes there are three to four riders on a bike. They ride on the wrong side of the road and many times on the footpath at Dadar TT," the letter stated, adding, "The delivery bikers, from several food apps, add to the chaos as they choose the shortest and fastest route to deliver the food. We request you to ensure that traffic laws are properly implemented and these offenders are penalised on the spot."

Residents also said, "We have so many senior citizens who simply cannot cross the road when these bikers come zooming down. We witness that bikes are routinely parked on pavements at Dadar TT narrowing the walking space and they claim pavements are for pedestrians. Our woes are compounded because lanes in the colony are narrow."

Dadar Parsi Colony
Narrow lanes inside Dadar Parsi Colony make it the traffic situation here worse

The letter listed other Dadar Parsi Colony (DPC) issues like the chaotic morning traffic jams at Mancherji Joshi Statue or at the end of Mancherji Joshi Road opening onto Tilak Road, saying one constable at any of these spots would help.

Also Read: Mumbai: 11-year-old girl dies after dad's bike skids on road at Dadar

Need to monitor traffic

Resident D Dalal, one of the signatories to the letter, said that they had also highlighted that the signal at Dadar TT (outside HDFC Bank/Shabana Stores) is seldom followed. "It is necessary to have a constable at this signal," she said.

Dalal and Y Engineer, the letter's other signatory, did acknowledge that the police may have a manpower crunch, in which case some astute sharing of resources would ease issues. In their letter, they explained that there are "two to three (sometimes four) constables at the Tilak Bridge (Damodar Mithaiwalla Junction) signal light." Instead, "one of these should be deputed at the HDFC/Shabana Stores signal light." Several locals have reacted sharply in light of the accident saying that the August 5 letter "is one in many written through the years pointing to the problems within."

Dadar Parsi Colony
Dadar Parsi Colony's iconic residential alcove

A tweet to the Mumbai police following this paper's Monday report on the death in the Colony stated that residents had been complaining about college students riding bikes "in the air" around Five Gardens and more mess created by school vans and car cleaners in the morning around DPYA school.

Onus on pedestrians

The police have responded with a helpline number. This is followed by another tweet which read, "that car cleaning in DPC is a huge nuisance since the entire stretch gets slippery and elderly people and kids are always prone to slipping."

Both Dalal and Engineer claimed that the letters were hand-delivered to the police, "by a group representing the DPC which is usually how we register our concern."

"We have been on an absolute warpath since the past 1.5 years when it comes to writing letters about our problems. The police do respond but a few bikers are penalised. In the absence of stringent punishment, they seem emboldened and continue like before," Engineer said.

Locals say that the unfortunate bottom line is that the onus is on pedestrians to watch out for themselves, rather than riders who should bear the brunt for their reckless ways.

Also Read: Mumbai: Dadar Parsi Colony has been turned into 'Parking Colony'

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