Authorities handcuffed as one-wheeling remains rampant

Paltry fines fail to deter repeat offenders, who brazenly return to the highways to engage in deadly game

Ahtesham Khan   April 17, 2024
Police authorities across the country seem clueless about effective measures to curb one-wheeling. PHOTO: EXPRESS


Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) police finds itself handcuffed to issuing mere Rs 100 tickets to those recklessly engaging in the perilous act of one-wheeling, as it struggles to contain the rampant danger posed by such stunts.

Meanwhile, as the authority grapples with the burgeoning crisis, the call for stricter legislation grows louder from the shattered families left to mourn the senseless loss of promising lives.

According to details, a staggering 80% surge in road accidents this year stems from motorcycle mishaps, leaving shattered families to grapple with the aftermath of high-speed bike stunts.

Limbs are lost, dreams dashed, as young lives are tragically cut short due to the allure of reckless thrill-seeking.

Two years ago, tragedy struck 19-year-old Nauman's household on Independence Day, as he and his friends indulged in daredevil stunts. Racing down University Road, Nauman's joyride turned fatal when he collided with an electric pole, succumbing to his injuries.

His family, still reeling from the shock, demands stricter laws to prevent further tragedies.

Nauman's brother, Faheem Khan, expressed to The Express Tribune his deep concern, saying, "I shudder to think of how many households have been devastated by this deadly game. My brother, at an age meant for pursuing studies, had his life cut short due to reckless one-wheeling on a bike.”

Read also: Strict measures in place against one-wheeling, unauthorised parking

“We call for stricter legislation and punishment to prevent further tragedies from tearing families apart,” he added.

Asif, another victim of reckless speed, now grapples with a broken arm that robs him of his ability to work and his father's peace of mind.

Asif's father, Liaquat, shared with The Express Tribune, "The villagers and I repeatedly warned my son against one-wheeling and speeding, but he refused to heed our advice. Now, it's incredibly challenging for him to carry out daily tasks, such as going to the shop or working. He feels immense shame for his actions and is unable to ride a motorcycle due to his injured arm."

Likewise, Wasif’s brush with death in the Chuha Gujar area of Peshawar left him battling deep head injuries with his memory forever scarred by the trauma

Even a year after the incident, Wasif's memory continues to be significantly impacted by the accident. As a result, his family made the decision to get rid of the motorcycle.

The scourge of one-wheeling extends beyond the capital city, infiltrating districts like Peshawar, Charsadda, Mardan, and beyond.

However, despite the gravity of the issue, legislative loopholes leave law enforcement struggling to contain the menace.

Read: One-wheelers rule roads as police spectate silently

Areas like Chamkani and Gulbahar have become hotbeds for such antics, with weekends witnessing a surge in reckless behaviour. While traffic police make feeble attempts to curb the menace, the lack of stringent laws renders their efforts futile.

Sources within the Peshawar police revealed that traffic authorities in the city only issue fines to 30 to 40 youths each month due to legal constraints. The paltry fines fail to deter repeat offenders, who brazenly return to the highways to engage in the deadly game once more.

However, the traffic police merely seize the bikes and release the riders.

Fines ranging from Rs100 to Rs300 are imposed, with payment demanded the following day at court. After disposing of their bikes, these individuals resume their one-wheeling escapades on the highways once more.

Taqleen, a young man apprehended for one-wheeling in Peshawar's Tahkal area, recounted to The Express Tribune how his friends intervened to rescue him upon his capture.

Subsequently, authorities impounded the motorcycle, and Taqleen faced a fine of Rs300 imposed by the court.

Caught in the cycle of thrill and consequence, young men like Taqleen find themselves ensnared by the allure of danger, rescued by friends only to face a slap on the wrist from authorities.


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