Pedestrian Day In Pune: Not Just On Laxmi Road, Walking Plazas Should Be Made Citywide, Say Citizens; See Pics

Pedestrian Day In Pune: Not Just On Laxmi Road, Walking Plazas Should Be Made Citywide, Say Citizens; See Pics

The Free Press Journal caught up with several Punekars who had gathered to celebrate Pedestrian Day on Laxmi Road

Anand ChainiUpdated: Monday, December 11, 2023, 06:18 PM IST
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Pedestrian Day In Pune: Not Just On Laxmi Road, Walking Plazas Should Be Made Citywide, Say Citizens; See Pics | Anand Chaini

Punekars were treated to a delightful spectacle as the bustling Laxmi Road transformed into a vehicle-free zone on Monday. From 10am until 8pm, vehicle access was restricted along this thoroughfare to observe Pedestrian Day.

The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), in collaboration with the city police, traders' association, and hawkers' association, united to celebrate Pedestrian Day. Their aim was to raise awareness about pedestrian safety, emphasise pedestrian rights, and sensitise individuals through festive celebrations.

The focal point of the day was a vibrant walking plaza stretching from Nagarkar Talim Chowk to Umbrya Ganpati Chowk and on to Garud Ganpati Chowk, hosting a diverse lineup of activities.

The event featured a rangoli competition and an exhibition showcasing street designs and road safety initiatives. Throughout the day, there were engaging games, dance performances, singing sessions, and street plays.

The Free Press Journal caught up with several Punekars who had gathered to enjoy the festivities on Laxmi Road. They said that such initiatives should not be confined solely to Laxmi Road but should extend citywide.

"This walking plaza should be organised twice a year to reduce pollution for a day and give the roads some rest," suggested Neelima More. "Expanding this initiative beyond Laxmi Road is crucial," added Kavita Mali.

"Today brought back memories of my childhood. The games taught me road discipline and the importance of following traffic rules," reminisced Sheetal Dabhade. "This initiative will instill road discipline, teaching people to avoid distractions like phone usage while walking. This is my second year attending this event," expressed Nikita Waghale.

"This is a commendable initiative. I experienced a simulation where I wore goggles simulating drunkenness, offering insights into the challenges faced by intoxicated drivers," shared Shreya Gogawale. "People must drive responsibly, refraining from using footpaths for vehicles. Embracing electric vehicles and bicycles is imperative," emphasised Devansh Kate, a student at New English High School in Rambagh.

'Turn most roads in the peth areas into vehicle-free zones'

Ravindra Gaikwad, Senior Police Inspector at Vishrambaug Police Station, advocated for the conversion of most roads in the peth areas into vehicle-free zones.

He emphasised, "Finding parking spaces in the city is nearly impossible. Considering the narrow roads, a significant portion of the peth areas should prioritise pedestrians. Extending initiatives similar to this one to roads like Kumthekar Road, Bajirao Road, and Shivaji Road would be highly beneficial."

Gaikwad further suggested, "Encouraging individuals to observe 'no-vehicle' and 'bicycle' days once a week would prove advantageous for their physical and mental well-being, as well as for the environment."

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