When Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik launched “traffic sentinel scheme” on Monday as a part of the National Road Safety Week, as many as 319 Sentinels were appointed who voluntarily offered their services to help Traffic Police in regulating and managing traffic.
But among the volunteers, one man stood out- 72-year-old Ganga Ram, a resident of north east Delhi’s Seelampur.
Ram has a painful backstory for doing what he is doing now. Three years ago, he lost his only son in an accident, while crossing the road.
Since then, the TV mechanic has made it a point to ensure that no family go through what he has suffered. He has been doing his bit to ease the traffic in Seelampur, especially during the rush hours.
Around three years ago, 72-year-old Ganga Ram, owner of a TV repair shop, lost his son to a traffic accident while he was crossing the road at a busy intersection in northeast Delhi’s Seelampur.
Since then, Ram has taken it upon himself to man the chaotic stretch and prevent any such accident. On Monday, Ram — who has been performing the duty of a traffic cop for over 30 years now — was officially inducted with Delhi Traffic Police as a traffic sentinel.
Besides Ram, 318 more were included in the group which will help the police man busy intersection and internal roads. Delhi police commissioner, Amulya Patnaik, launched the scheme as a part of the National Road Safety Week celebrations, where these 319 traffic wardens were sworn in.
“I have been managing the movement of traffic for the past 30 years. But after my son’s death, I come here and man traffic for at least eight to 10 hours a day,” Ram said.
He reaches the intersection around 9 am, when peak traffic rush begins, and stays there till around 10pm.
“I belong to a very poor family. After my son’s death, my daughter-in-law is the sole earning member. My business of TV repairing barely runs. The dress combination makes people follow my directions,” he said.
“Ganga Ram knows the Seelampur and Maujpur area so well that his expertise will be of great help to us. He will be get a new uniform of sentinels and he can continue his service to the society,” said special commissioner of police (traffic) Depender Pathak.
“These sentinels will be given identity cards, uniforms, reflective jackets and caps so that motorists can recognise them easily and adhere to their directions. This scheme is a community engagement programme,” Pathak, said.
Pathak said the sentinels will support the over 5,000-strong traffic police unit since they know their respective residential areas.
The traffic police also felicitated users of the Traffic Sentinel app. People who had accumulated the highest points by uploading photographs and videos of traffic violation on the mobile application were awarded with gifts such as motorcycles, scooters, movie tickets and cash prizes.
“I hope the scheme expands further and encourages more people to become the eyes and ears of the police force. This scheme will surely make an impact on the regulation and management of traffic in the city,” said Patnaik.