New Delhi, Oct 11, 2010 (Calcutta Tube) Major arterial roads in central Delhi were out of bounds to the public Sunday due to the Commonwealth Games cycling events being held there. While there were no traffic jams, many people were caught unawares and had to take longer alternative routes.
Apart from key roads, the Patel Chowk and Central Secretariat Metro stations were also closed from 8 a.m. till 6 p.m. for security reasons.
The cycling event began from Sansad Marg at 9 a.m. with the women’s 112-km Mass Start Road Race. As many as 83 athletes are participating.
This was followed by the men’s 168-km road race, beginning at the same spot at 1 p.m. The line-up includes 167 cyclists.
The major roads that were closed include Ashoka road, Jai Singh Road, Red Cross Road, Parliament Street, Rajendra Prasad Road, Janpath, Rajpath, Vijay Chowk, parts of Minto Road and Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg.
But many commuters were unaware about the traffic restrictions despite big advisories and maps put out by the traffic police in leading dailies.
‘We were not aware of the restrictions… we did not know about this. Our weekend got spoilt,’ said Navin Joshi, who had to take a long route to reach Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital from Ashoka Road.
Police officials said the sports event went on smoothly, and since it was a Sunday there wasn’t much traffic on the roads.
Restrictions were also in place for Metro commuters. The trains did not stop at Central Secretariat and Patel Chowk stations, and selected gates of central Rajiv Chowk Metro stations remained closed.