It is not doubt an embarrassing situation when a visitor from abroad is dangerously exposed to chaotic traffic in India. Just as he exits any of the country’s airports it takes him no time to be merged and jammed into it. Heavy traffic is one issue, but the chaotic traffic is a completely different kettle of fish. Many of us who haven’t been abroad simply fail to acknowledge the predicament. For them there is nothing wrong with our traffic, its only in our nature to have the Chalta Hai attitude. The worst of all is the movement in opposite direction on one-way roads, unchecked by anyone.
The second worst contributor to the precarious traffic system in India is the attitude of drivers and pedestrians. A few decades back when the luxury mode of local travel was bicycle, it was customary for the pedestrians to wait and allow the cyclist to pass first, even though the road might have been empty. This happened as a rule, irrespective of whether cyclist was a laborer and the pedestrian a rich man or someone in power. Today, a pedestrian can hold the fast moving mass of vehicular traffic by an inconspicuous signal of his hand. He then crosses a road sometime at the peril of an accident involving multiple vehicles. Internationally this might works in civilized countries, but here it brings the already congested traffic to a grinding halt.