Wednesday, April 19, 2017

What smooth flow of traffic means in Bhutan.

Yesterday I posted a comment on traffic direction and deflection. And came across two views of young people. One felt all should be equally inconvenienced without partiality and another felt people should plan ahead. It seems they were born after 1970s and therefore unaware of national philosophy on normal life and normal traffic flow. In case some are interested let me share what I learnt over the years.

At one time even Ministers had pilots in Thimphu and sirens were used to announce VIP convoy. Then sometime in mid 1970s His Royal Highness Prince Namgyel Wangchuck decided to discard the use of pilot and that decision made other Ministers follow suit. His Majesty King Jigme Singye Wangchuck ever the epitome of simplicity never liked the sound of pilot siren and gradually His Majesty would not permit the pilot ahead of his car to even honk to seek right of way.

That is how important to the nation to preserve normal flow of life and traffic in the capital city of Bhutan where all VVIP and VIP live and also visit. I am sure this national philosophy must have been passed down through the traffic managers and coordinators at Royal Bhutan Police. The general public even seniors, I doubt, even noted such noble gesture and essence let alone younger generation ever comprehending such art of nation living.

The goal and objective of planning and coordinating traffic flow especially during emergencies and VVIP visit has to be, minimum disruption to normal way of life and flow of traffic and maximum convenience and security for the convoy of visiting VVIP or most easy way of tackling emergencies. If the goal was to forget all else but concentrating 100 % on tackling emergencies or only securing undisturbed convoy passage then easiest would be to declare no motor traffic day. That way everyone would be equally stranded at home or wayside and young people's thoughts of impartiality and planning for the day would be fulfilled.

The most important national philosophy that His Majesty the Fourth King pursued was no matter what,  Normal National Life Must Flow . People should read between the lines of the royal statements made even at the height of problems in the South. Students must stay in school and continue studying ; business people must continue the activities of commerce. The King did not ask all to drop everything and take up arms. Many leaders may have done just that and I do not fault them for their limitations. But for His Majesty the Triple Gem King, the greatest task of a leader was to protect the normal flow of national life,  come what may. Unfortunately very few new democratic leaders care to uphold this greatest goal of nation administration.

And I doubt even at RIGSS, any Speaker had as yet conveyed this main essence of national life and living as pursued by our Monarchs. People jump to declare how noble the Kings are but most never even cared to understand the essence of nobleness of our Kings. For many it's just a chorus they want to be seen acclaimng  publicly.  

Many components of new laws and rules only portray hardliners way of governing the nation ( recent examples: exhorbitant penalties and unnecessary prohibitions  like sport wear ( track suit ) in schools and over Nu:1000 penalty for failing to slow down at zebra crossing ). Laws and Rules are necessary but need to be tampered with common sense to protect essence of national life and living. Heavy fines that call for hammer to kill flies and stupidly adopted cruel rules that demonise self expressions and general convenience only sow seed of social oppression and animosity. As in even  flow of normal traffic so highly valued by the King so must Governments value the essence of national flow of life and living. 

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