One person is killed on Mumbais streets every 15 hours, the most difficult chronicle in India. In an attempt to get a grasp on the chaos, the police are moving digital recording penalties electronically and installing CCTV. But will it stop people taking risks?

For 30 minutes after she was hit, Archana Pandya lay bleeding on a superhighway in the busy Mumbai suburb of Goregaon. The 22 -year-old, who had just started a new job, was on her behavior dwelling from make when she used the victim of a hit-and-run. She died of her injuries. There were a lot of beings there, and it happened right opposite a police station, but no one came forward to help, says her friend Siddharth Pandya. Its not the roads; in India, its the person or persons the hell is unsafe.

Pandya was one of 586 people killed in road accidents in Mumbai in 2015, the equivalent of one demise every 15 hours. Another 2,034 were seriously injured. The long response times of ambulances and emergency vehicles, working together with the unwillingness of bystanders to help street scapegoats for fear of being detained by police and infirmaries, contribute to slow, agonizing extinctions for hundreds of parties every year. As a make, Mumbai a city with roughly the same number of cars as London, but more than four times the number of street fatalities has become known as Indias crash capital. In 2015 there were 23,468 recorded transaction collisions: the highest in the two countries.

The citys urban geography has helped engender a culture of negligent driving. Vehicles zigzag through dense traffic jams, cutting paths, overtaking from the left or zipping past red lights. Drivers know that the penalties are small and the chances of getting caught are low. Numerous scoff at the relevant recommendations of wearing a seatbelt, while others casually take telephone calls and reaction verse contents as they navigate through the labyrinth of cars.

These lax attitudes and dangerous driving attires are spawned right from the driving measure, which exists primarily as a formality and is readily smoothed with a small bribe. Aditi Deopujari, a Mumbai resident who got her “drivers licence” in 2000, explains: I was part of a driving institution that had a setup with the Motor Vehicles Department[ which issues licences ]. I presented up and had some rule rounds, but never had to sit the quiz or had any written measure regarding the rules. I just got sided the licence. Another tenant, who asked to remain anonymous, says: I literally had to drive five metres forwards, and then five metres turn. That was it, I passed.

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Mumbai has the highest density of cars in India. Image: Alamy

In an is making an effort to get a clutch on the chaos, Milind Bharambe, the heads of state of the traffic police, is presiding over a brand-new traffic control venture. The metropoli has given all transaction policeman electronic designs to concern penalties, and has installed 4,000 CCTV cameras at conjugations and signals. After five breaches, we are going to start taking away licences, says Bharambe, whose plan to digitise the traffic control organization takes cues from Prime Minister Narendra Modis digital India programme.

Watch, says police officer Prashant Prabhu, motioning towards a traffic light at a busy conjugation on the Mumbai marina. Across the road, the light is about to go from light-green to ruby-red. But just as he prophesies, automobiles accelerate through, hoping to cross the signal as the yellow flashings. Some keep driving even after the light-headed croaks red.

Signal jumping is the biggest offence at this conjunction, he says. Everyone guesses, the light-headed has just turned red-faced, let me to continue efforts to get through. None wants to wait.

Prabhu startles out and flags down a motorbike that has just sped through the red light. He asks for the equestrians licence, then attracts out a calculator-like invention, and flubs trying to enter his password into the brand-new machine. Eventually he perforates in the licence multitude and asks for a credit card to pay the 200 rupee( 2.40) penalty.

Sometimes parties refuse to give their driving licence. OK , no problem, we just employed their licence dish digit into the machine, and it will automatically send a fine to their telephone, he says. This path we have a record of all the traffic offences each move has committed.

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Milind Bharambe in its term of office

Until last-place month, traffic fines for even the most serious corrects were issued on paper, with no way to check if a motorist was a repeat offender, says Baharambe. Weve been running the programme for precisely a few months, and already weve given out over 150,000 penalties.

Bharambe seems a believable nominee for the enormous project of modernising Mumbais archaic traffic patrolling plan. Its term of office walls feature likeness of the Hindu elephant god Ganesh as well as live flow of CCTV footage from around the city; on his wrist is an Apple watch. He has a black belt in karate, a 10 -year prevailing streak in state-wide shooting races, and a solid evidence as a policeman his achievements include setting up the rapid reaction unit during the course of its Mumbai terrorist attack of 2008. And he has a biography of introducing tech-based initiatives as superintendent of police in Sangli and Thane, two metropolitans near Mumbai.

As well as digitising transaction offences, his propose includes the more analogue solution of new hydraulic towing vans, which can move 4x4s until now, SUVs that had being severely parked or to participate in collisions had to be left on the road until their driver moved them. He has also invested in digital signboards to advise about roadworks or accidents. This is the first time that something like this is being done in the country.

One floor below Bharambes office, Kishore Shinde, the traffic polices firstly heads of state of multimedia, is checking on duos of uniformed police officer these are the officers tasked with using the new CCTV cameras to issue tickets and fines remotely. Shinde too oversees a new complaints system, which receives more than 300 contents from frustrated drivers every day.

The biggest problems are traffic jams , no parking, collisions, and petroleum sheds on the road leading, he says. Were making all the fines cashless, so moves can offer via charge card or mobile phone. We know there is corruption and bribery even in our own district, like there is from top to bottom everywhere in India. But once you compensate by charge card, that means we have a record of the busines. No police officer can just take a cut for themselves.

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A boy sweeps in the downpour in Mumbai. Photo: Rafiq Maqbool/ AP

Although digitising Mumbais traffic operations is a significant alter that could improve efficiency and increase dishonesty, Siddharth Pandya, brother of Archana, doubts it will have much impact on the death toll. Good-for-nothing has changed, he says. Many of the CCTVs police set before are not fully continued or dont undertaking, so why would it be different now? Where Archana was killed there was a CCTV camera, but it was broken, so we never found out who affected her.

Bharambe, for his part, highlights the fact that Mumbais collision statistics appear worse than other Indian metropolitans because the Mumbai police are better at recording coincidences. He highlights the fact that Delhi has four times as many vehicles as Mumbai but barely evidences any no-injury coincidences, in a deliberate effort to keep crash statistics low-grade. He likewise points to mismanagement, corruption and red tape within a complex web of urban planning authorities. We have to keep cleaning up their mess, he says.

Harish Wahi, head of road safety NGO Equal Streets, is of the view that the citys traffic problems extend even deeper.

South Bombay was built in British colonial times, and all of new Bombay has taken determine very quickly, post-1 980 s. Because of the accelerate of that growing, the planning and caliber of roads has travelled. On top of that, pavements are intruded upon by hawkers or shops, so pedestrians got no choice but to stroll on busy streets.

Prabhu, the traffic policeman on Mumbais marina, says police are blamed unfairly for superhighway demises. I am literally on my paws the whole daytime. I scarcely sit down. The difficulty is the public doesnt wishes to drive properly they are only want to reach their destination as fast as possible.

Bharambe admits that his digital drive is exclusively like to reduce deaths by a small fraction. The beings likewise have to take specific responsibilities, he says. Look, two summers ago , nothing of the people on motorbikes were wearing helmets. Now, since weve started executing[ helmet wearing ], youll receive most of the motorists have their helmets. But youll still realise men who are driving their motorbikes wearing helmets themselves, but the partner and children sitting behind them are not. Now tell me, if beings themselves are taking such risks with their own familys lives, then what can we do?

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