At present we have 10,000 CCTV cameras which are owned by the public. It is like an investment from the public and nearly 500 cameras at present are installed by the government.
We have adopted a system where we don’t want an interface with the public because when there is an interface, there is a scope for various kinds of allegations and questions on the validity and the fairness of the police. So, we have adopted an evidence based system. We collect the evidence through surveillance mechanism and issue the challan. When we issue the e-challan, we also send a photograph to the violator. In case he still has any doubt over the veracity of the challan, he can make a representation to us. This has created a lot of goodwill among the citizens and the cases of assault or misbehavior from the police or the community side have come down drastically. This has established our system as community-friendly and technology oriented. In future, we plan to make 90 to 95 percent of our challans non-contact. All cannot be non-contact because we cannot avoid manual challans for cases like drunk driving unless we check it personally.
Hyderabad, in the last four to five years, has been attracting a lot of infrastructure companies for traffic services. So, how is it becoming a mini-hub for traffic infrastructure?
We are the youngest state. We were formed around two years back and our Chief Minister has a vision for the state. He wants to make the city a global city. For that, we definitely have to put a lot of infrastructure and technology into the city so that it gives that look to the citizens. That is why we have come up with the ITMS and violation management system. We are coming up with a system where we will have interface with the commuters about the traffic position. We are coming up with VMS boards in almost all the junctions where real time information about the traffic will be given to the commuters every second. So we hope to provide good services to the citizens by adoption of technology.
We, in Telangana, feel that there are certain things that technology can do better and there are certain things that humans can do better. So we have to complement both the things. Wherever there is a human angle involved, there is scope for subjectivity but if we use technology, objectivity and accountability follow. So, this is how we are adopting technology and trying to give better services to the citizens with minimum interface, minimum deployment of manpower and maximum output.
We are coming up with a system where we will have interface with the citizens about the traffic position for the commuters. We are coming up with VMS boards in almost all the junctions where real time information about the traffic will be given to the commuters every second.
What is the response to Metro?
Metro is already coming up. It has not yet started operating though. We expect the operation to start soon and once that happens, the city’s quality of life will improve
How effective did you find the brainstorming, sharing of information and expertise in the seminar hall?
People, I found, were quite receptive and there was also a good presence at the seminar. People asked quite a few questions and all were good questions. I personally feel that people are looking for solutions now. This is the age of IT and people don’t want to be affected will small issues, they want services to be given at their doorsteps. So, people are looking for technology and it is high time the government came forward to invest in technology to improve people’s life. The seminars pointed in the direction of such possibilities.