The ‘Not-so-free-Islamabad Expressway’

December 2, 2016


It was with great efforts of mine, culminating in a meeting with the IGP Islamabad, wherein he directed the SSP Traffic Islamabad to stop trucks getting on the Islamabad Expressway during office time in the morning.

Since most of the office goers hit the Islamabad Expressway at around 8 am and after, it was really a welcome surprise when we all started noticing that there were no trucks on expressway leaving five lanes open to private cars and buses.

However, for the past couple of days, I was hitting the expressway at around 7:15 am and afterwards in order to drop my granddaughter in a school in Islamabad. To my utter surprise, I would find a line of trucks blocking/slowing down the heavy rush of cars not only in their designated lane but also on the expressway as well.

Except for one odd occasion, there was no traffic policeman on duty, especially at countless bus/wagon stops to regulate the traffic. I would earnestly request the IGP and the SSP Traffic Islamabad to please have mercy on the commuters and stop trucks from entering the expressway from 7 – 9 am and 5 – 7 pm till Islamabad and Rawalpindi bypasses get constructed. By the way, such bypasses around major cities seem to be never a priority of various governments – past and present. Instead of Metro Bus in Rawalpindi/Islamabad, a reasonable transport service linking all major stops would have still left enough funds at the disposal of the governments to construct the bypasses, environmentally improve the air we breathe and aesthetically transform the public into happy citizens bereft of today’s chaotic traffic.

Major (retd) Talaat Khurshid

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