Traffic saviour of Benson town

Traffic saviour of Benson town

Submitted by Editor on Sun, 2016-03-27 10:33 Bengaluru: Have you ever spared a thought to assist traffic policeman who stands – in the scorching sun or even when it is pouring – to ensure we reach our destinations safe and smooth? While most of us are too busy to even consider it, meet Shahanawaz (68) who has been manning the traffic voluntarily at Benson Town road for more than 10 years.What started as a small gesture to help people cross the stretch, eventually became Shahanawaz’s passion to manage traffic alone without any assistance from the traffic police men.“I come all the way from Bagalur. Earlier, my wife used to work as a maid in one of the nearby apartments and I would take up small odd jobs in the locality. One day I realized that traffic on the stretch is heavy and people found it difficult to cross. I decided to help them and that it became my passion,” says Shahanawaz.He would come at 8.30 am and manage traffic till 1 pm and again return by 2 pm and stay back till 10 pm. “Even traffic cops would retire for the day after 8 and I would man the traffic till late into night – up to 10 pm,” he says. However, now with his age catching up, he cannot stand for such a long time. But that hasn’t deterred him from doing what he loves doing. “Now, I come at 8.30 am and manage traffic till 1 pm.”Has he ever been acknowledged by the traffic cops for the work that he does without expecting anything in return?“When Sangaliana sir was the Deputy commissioner of Police, he had sent his staff to summon me to his office. I was perplexed in the beginning. Later, when I met Sangliana sir, he had kind words to say about my work. He appreciated me for assisting the cops voluntarily to ensure smooth traffic. I wish I had taken some kind of appreciation letter from him,” says Shahanawaz.“I never ask money. But some appreciate my work and as a note of thank you hand me Rs 10 or 50. I buy food for me and my wife from this money,” he adds. Shahanawaz has a son and a daughter who is married. He stays with his daughter.The stretch used to witness heavy traffic earlier as vehicles from Nandi Durga road, Cantonment railway station and Tannery Road would converge here. But now it has been made one way and hence the number of vehicles have reduced.“He has a lot of patience to stand under the scorching sun. No matter what the season, he is here for us. He never asks us for money,” said Selvamani, another resident.Even at this age, Shahanawaz is happy that he could contribute to society in his own way.