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Are Indians ill-mannered on the road?

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June 26, 2006 12:39 IST

We are sure you have encountered the Ugly Indian on the Road.

He is the one who zips his fast car's power windows down and lets fly a whoosh of pan-laden spittle. While his chidren throw out Lay's wrappers.

He is the one who has no sense of lane discipline.

He is the one who honks his horn behind you the minute the signal a mile ahead turns green.

He is the one who will show you the finger for letting him know he is going slow on the fast lane.

The Ugly Indian on the Road is no figment of one's imagination, even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is concerned by the phenomenon to caution against the poor manners on display even as India goes about providing world-class highways.

'Building modern roads and driving modern cars are not the end-all and be-all of progress. Good road manners and adherence to road discipline are equally important,' he said on Saturday, at a national highway project inauguration function in Bangalore.

The prime minister said people must learn road manners, how to give way to pedestrians, how to observe normal rules while overtaking, how to park and when not to blow a horn.

'These are simple rules, but their observance makes a lot of difference to our daily lives,' he said. 'We Indians behave with great courtesy at home and with our family and friends. But sometimes, when we go out we leave these good manners at home. On the road, we lose control of our good senses.'

Do you agree that Indians are a nation of road-ragers? Tell us!