HC objects to closing roads for VVIP movement

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Mumbai, Jan 17 (PTI) The Bombay High Court todayexpressed strong objection to closing of roads by the TrafficPolice Department to facilitate smooth travelling of VVIPsvisiting the city and VIPs like the state Chief Minister, HomeMinister and other Ministers.

"During the recent visit of the President Pratibha Patil,all signals on the road towards Mantralaya were closed. Whycan''t authorities advise the President not to keep anyprogrammes during peak hours," a division bench of Justices DK Deshmukh and K K Tated questioned while hearing a publicinterest litigation filed by the Bombay Bar Association.

"Whenever the Chief Minister''s convoy passes through hisbungalow Varsha, the entire traffic is disrupted tillMantralaya. The same is the case with the Home Minister. Ifthey are in such a hurry to reach their offices why don''t theystart early," Justice Deshmukh said.

The court further remarked that the VIPs should beadvised to not travel in peak hours so that the common mandoes not have to suffer. "As it is traffic in this city ishorrible. Closing the signal for a few minutes is fine but notfor hours," the court observed.

Government pleader Dhairyasheel Nalawade argued thatthe schedules of VVIPs and VIPs are not decided by the TrafficDepartment. The court has directed Nalawade to seek furtherinstructions from the Traffic Department and adjourned thematter till February 14.

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