Agencies, citizens team up for ‘Nimbus Express Yatra’

Government agencies and civic volunteers joined forces to promote the use of public transport on Wednesday.

Besides the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, the Bengaluru traffic police, the Directorate of Urban Land Transport and the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation took part in the campaign on bus commuting called ‘Nimbus Express Yatra’ along the Bus Priority Lane (BPL) on the Outer Ring Road.  

The campaign began at Central Silk Board Junction and Kalamandira (near the Marathahalli bridge) bus stops. Volunteers boarded different buses from both the pick-up points towards the Eco Space Tech Park in Bellandur, where they gathered before a skywalk.

As they arrived, the volunteers were supported by cyclists, artists and musicians.

Speaking on the occasion, BMTC chairman N S Nandiesha Reddy said: “We need to promote public transport to reduce air pollution and traffic congestion.” 

The dedicated corridor has made it possible for commuters to reach their destinations faster than any other mode of transport since it is mandatory for the public to make way for buses in the bus priority lane, Reddy said.

Co-founder of Citizen For Bengaluru (CfB) Srinivas Alavilli said the #NimbusExpress bus yatra had shown how badly the residents wanted a mass public transport.

“The only difference (with the earlier campaigns like #ChukuBukuBeku and #BusBhagyaBeku and ModaluTrainBeku campaigns) is that we are joined by the government agencies and are working together to change the city’s negative brand image due to the traffic congestion,” Alavilli explained.

He dubbed the bus priority lane a ‘godsend’ for those demanding more investment and focus on public transport. “When buses become faster, they suddenly become viable to many on the clogged roads of Bengaluru,” he said.

Meanwhile, citizens gathered during the occasion expressed concern over the poor footpaths that make it harder for commuters to reach the bus stops.

BBMP Additional Commissioner D Randeep assured that the civic body would develop footpaths along the BPL bus stops. “Other motorists aren’t following lane discipline as we could observe several private vehicles taking the bus lane. The footpaths along bus stops are not built properly. We’ve taken note of both these aspects,” Randeep said.

He said marshals would be asked to come down heavily on lane violations. “We’ll develop footpaths along the BPL
bus stops to encourage commuters to take public transport,” he said.

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