Sound too good to be true? That remains to be seen. In a state where traffic is out of control pretty much all the time and violators almost never get caught, the police have come up with a way to turn citizens into ‘silent sentinels’ against traffic violations, themselves. According to a TOI article, adapted from a module that the Delhi traffic police follow, the Director General of Police, Muktesh Chander launched the ‘Traffic sentinel scheme’ on Friday. This is a platform on WhatsApp through which citizens can report violations in the state to the traffic cell, and earn cash rewards.
Being a silent sentinel via Whatsapp
The platform works like this –
Citizens, anywhere and at any place, can take photos or videos of the violators and their violations and send them to 7875756110. They can also add details of the erring vehicle along with the license plate.
There are a lot of people that slip under the radar of the traffic cops. This platform aims to change it with the help of civilians. DGP Chander called the citizens ‘silent sentinels of the society’.
Here’s what everyone needs to do –
Users will have to register themselves by sending their name, address and email id on the WhatsApp number, following which their participation will be verified by the Goa traffic cell.
Based on the type of violation, the user will receive points. For instance, reporting an instance of triple-seat riding on a two-wheeler will earn them 10 points, while parking on footpaths or zebra crossings will accrue three points.
On accumulating 100 points, the user can claim a reward of Rs 1,000. A lucky draw will also be announced, wherein one lucky traffic sentinel will be the recipient of a motorcycle.
“I have adopted this formula in Delhi and it has been successful. We have, in fact, given a car as bumper prize there,” Chander, who was the special commissioner (traffic) of the Delhi Police earlier, said.
Below are some examples of traffic violations to look out for:
Citizens get to do their bit
Every day, citizens can register as many complaints as they deem necessary. According to DGP Chander, the money collected on the challans issued will be utilized for the cash rewards.
On an average, 4,000 challans are issued in Goa every day. These are for various violations such as rash and negligent driving, not wearing seatbelts etc.
The state transport department had also launched a citizen app earlier this year. Called ‘Complaint Registration’, it allows citizens to file complaints about traffic violations.
Let’s hope that this system works the way it’s supposed to and that there is no abuse of power when it comes to citizens policing each other.