Rush-hour traffic—these words are enough to invoke eye rolls and groans from those who have to face it daily. You surely have endured and cringed through the entire experience—pollution, jam-packed roads, loud honking, and mischievous drivers who just have to cut through lanes and jump signals.
Gurugram is no different from any other Indian city when it comes traffic-related woes, but Neeraj Diwan, a businessman based in the city, is on a mission to ease this chaos.
Speaking to the Indian Express, Neeraj said, “The Gurgaon (Gurugram) traffic police, two years ago, posted on Facebook that they were looking to involve citizens in community policing. That’s when most of us applied. I joined because after coming to Gurgaon from Canada, I was horrified by the messy traffic here.”
But that wasn’t all.
The Gurugram traffic could have personally affected Neeraj’s relative who was on his way to an important exam, and that was when the businessman decided that he just couldn’t sit still while people blatantly ignored traffic rules.
“I was on my way to drop my nephew for his board exam and was stuck in a traffic jam,” he recalls. When he got down from his car, he saw that several people were jumping signals, making it impossible for the traffic to flow smoothly.
“So I stood in front of the vehicles that were supposed to stop and follow the red light and refused to move till the vehicles who had the green signal passed. I remember horns were constantly blaring at me—a reflection of how angry the commuters were for making them wait,” he told Hindustan Times.
So when the opportunity to work for the traffic police came up, Neeraj jumped at the chance.
Today, he is not just another Road Safety Officer (RSO) but among the very few who are making a remarkable difference.
Back in 2013, he played an important role in cracking cases of underage driving in the city. To encourage carpooling among co-workers, he opened a separate lane on a major road and even created change at another road, so it operates without a traffic signal.
His experiments are a detailed study. Since he has previous experience and knowledge about traffic management, he creates blue charts of an area and plans test runs on crucial spots. Neeraj also organises safety drives regularly, an initiative that has helped repair many potholes on busy roads.
KK Rao, the commissioner of Police, Gurugram is all praises for the enthusiastic businessman who doubles up as an RSO. “Diwan is always full of energy and dedicated towards his work. He works in close coordination with the traffic officials and has been involved in all major planning, involving traffic diversions and major drives across the city,” he told HT.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)