Mangaluru: When Traffic Lights ‘Don’t Work’, Traffic Cops ‘Don’t Work’ Either!

Mangaluru: Are our City traffic cops working hard or hardly working? Do you think many of these cops are doing a good job? I don’t think so. Now that the “Road Safety Week” just got over-do you think that the one week awareness on safety traffic related issues did serve the purpose? Probably not!. Following strict traffic rules just during Road Safety Week will not prevent traffic violations. To bring the motorists who break the laws under control, the concerned traffic authorities including RTO should enforce strict traffic rules throughout the year. Traffic cops should be alert, smart and corrupt free? All this Road Safety Week did was- it got publicity in various media publications, other than that it didn’t bring any changes in the driving/riding ways of the motorists, nor did it changed the attitude and working habits of the traffic cops either. For example,


Have you noticed how the traffic cops handle the traffic when there is a congestion- many a times they are not to be seen, they will standing far away, or sitting in the police booth. Especially when the traffic lights “don’t Work”, the traffic cops “Don’t Work” either-they will stay away from such situations by hiding behind a tree or a petty shop or will be chatting on their mobile phones-as a result the motorists themselves have to perform the duties of the traffic cops. If such is the case, when even spend the citizens hard earn tax money to pay salary of these negligent cops. It is very sad to see that these cops don’t even bother to come forward and control the traffic when there is traffic congestion or when the signal lights don’t work. But there are many citizens who support our cops with a few arguments, namely the following three:

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I will never accept these 3 arguments about traffic cops: Argument # 1- Traffic cops are underpaid, so they look for extra money here and there. Fact: They are paid sufficiently for what education they have and what job they do. If they feel that their pay is less, they should consider another job or ask the government to raise their salary. There are many other people who get paid less than the cops and are working in harsh conditions. Argument # 2: Traffic cops in Mangaluru are under-staffed. Fact: There is sufficient number of traffic cops in Mangaluru. But instead of ensuring smooth traffic flow at the traffic signals, they hide somewhere after the signal to pocket fines from offenders and collect hafta from transport vehicles. Argument # 3: Traffic cops have a high pressure job and hence should be treated with extra respect. Fact: If they feel that they can’t handle the job, they are free to look for another job. A high pressure job does not give them the license to treat other people/motorists badly.

Also, I prefer to have a bossy look rather than an apologetic look when dealing with corrupt traffic cop who has stopped me for no offense. A saale-jaanta-hai-mera-baap-kaun-hai-? (do-you-know-who-my-father-is-?) kind of attitude is better while dealing with these corrupt cops rather than pleading politely with them. He would think twice before demanding bribe from you. If you have committed some offense, apologise politely and pay the fine. But if a corrupt cop catches you for no reason, don’t be easy on him. He must be afraid of the consequences of his actions. Don’t misbehave with them, but also don’t let them misbehave with you.

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I could have written a long article but I believe that a short and sweet report would tell it all . Now the Question is, when will our city traffic cops learn to work honestly and do their job right? When will they learn – Seems like they will learn when the rulers of this country / state / district / panchayat learn. When will the rulers learn – When the voters learn! Voters learn what? – Voters learn that the Government is run for them, by them and the rulers are accountable and above all when they learn that unless we change collectively the rulers will never change. So all in all we’re going to be like this for some good number of years.


  1. Exactly I agree with the writer. If the traffic police less numbered they can easily make use of Homeguards, college students in turn students learn traffic rules and regulations. They can approach citizens of mangalore I knew many will come forward to help.

    In fact our administration not interested to make citizens life easy, Nanthoor circle is clear example of negligence o by city administration.

  2. Well said by the author- I fully don’t support the three arguments of the cops- frankly speaking our city traffic cops lack knowledge of traffic rules- more the new laws, more money these cops make through bribe/corruption.

    Thanks D’Souza for a good article- hope it will awaken the higher authorities and straighten up these lazy public servants.

  3. One week Road Safety Week is simply a waste of time- instead of limiting the awareness drive to a week, the traffic police dept and RTO should ensure a long-term drive to check traffic violations by motorists. Regarding our traffic cops there is nothing much we can do-since they can’t give up their old habits. Thanks for highlighting the carelessness of our city cops.

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