What Mizoram Can Teach Rest of India About Traffic Discipline
People of Mizoram tell us why they always follow traffic rules.
Reporter: Isaac Zoramsanga Video Editor: Prajjwal Kumar
Mutual respect, patience, and civic sense – These three qualities are the reason why people of Mizoram are the most disciplined Indians on roads.
Mizos' traffic etiquettes have been lauded time and again on the internet. Viral photos and videos of people patiently waiting in their lanes, without honking or overtaking, have been shared oftentimes, simply because the sight is rare in the rest of the country.
This traffic discipline has earned Aizawl the title of the 'Silent City' of India.
"It's not that we read the traffic rules, learn them by heart, or study them. It is just in our nature. We care for others. And we don't brutally overtake people and switch lanes."Gloria, Resident
The Quint's Isaac Zoramsanga shot videos around the city for a day and spoke to people. We could just play unedited videos for the viewers and they'd notice how no one honks, really. Aizawl being a hilly area, it is prone to traffic but people simply wait in their lanes.
Cars stick to the left side of the road and two-wheelers stick to the right side of the road.
"Mutual respect is part of our culture and I think we practise that even on the streets."Kimi Colney, Journalist
'Beep-Beep' if You're in a Hurry!
One simple rule that is followed by drivers, instead of incessant honking, is the slight beep-beep of the horn, which is an indication for the vehicle in front that maybe they are driving slowly and the vehicle behind them needs to go forward.
"Given the chance, the car moves aside and lets the other person go ahead. And then, they just don't go ahead, they usually give a 'beep-beep' to say thank you."Gloria, Resident
There are no traffic lights or division of roads. Just the whistle of traffic cop and hand gestures are enough for commuters.
When asked if they would cut lanes or take wrong side to reach a place early, all the people said the same thing:
'We would feel ashamed to do such a thing.'
It is amazing how everyone in the city feels the same way about obeying traffic rules. Flouting rules is an embarrassment for Mizo people.
Now, what do they feel about the traffic in the rest of India?
"They do not have any concern for others. They show less respect to their own fellow citizens and selfishness. They don't care about what other people think."Sian Lalchhandami, Assistant Professor, Mizoram University
"Give time to others also. Respect others. As much as you want to reach on time, others also want to reach on time."Tleipuia Ralte, Resident
"I have been to other states in India. And I realised, more than ever, how wonderful it is to be a Mizo and to have a culture where everyone follows traffic rules."Kimi Colney, Journalist
Indians on the internet appreciate Mizo people for their commitment to follow traffic rules but when will the country take a move forward from the internet appreciation and start following traffic rules themselves?
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