Day 2: Partial success, commuters suffer

Day 2: Partial success, commuters suffer

Thousands of protestors have joined the march which started from the town hall and headed towards Raj Bhavan. DH photo

Day two of the Bharath Bandh called by the All India Central Council of Trade Unions on Wednesday saw a reversal of what transpired on day one.

As reports of stone-pelting of buses trickled in from Ramanagara, Ballari and Magadi road, the BMTC and KSRTC abruptly stopped operations. Bus-stops and stations were crowded with commuters on Wednesday.

Though most public transport services commenced operations in the morning, the depot managers recalled the crew on scheduled trips.

The lone KSRTC or BMTC service, rarely spotted on city roads, were bursting with jam-packed commuters. People were solely dependent on the metro, private transport such as autorickshaws, Ola and Uber cab services to reach their destinations.

There were also reports of autos and cabs charging exorbitant fares taking unfair advantage of the situation.

“We thought there would be some effect on Tuesday, but we saw a poor response and decided it would be the same on Wednesday.

In the morning, there were some buses plying on city roads, but, all of a sudden the BMTC stopped operations, now we are struggling. I am not even getting a connecting bus to reach the metro station. Even the autos are demanding Rs 100-150 for a 3-km ride,” said Kushala, a Kengeri resident.

Most private educational institutions had declared a two-day holiday, but, went back on their decision after witnessing the poor response on day one. Due to unavailability of public transport, most college and school-going students could not make it to classes on time. Commercial establishments were open as usual and main roads saw regular peak-hour traffic.

Raj Bhavan Chalo

Various trade unions took out a protest march - Raj Bhavan Chalo in Bengaluru. Thousands of protestors joined the march from the Town Hall to Raj Bhavan. Traffic in Corporation Circle and KG Road were affected as a result. Police personnel kept a strict vigil all over the city. They were successful in stopping the protestors on Palace Road, and diverted them to Freedom Park, where they held a rather peaceful protest.


Bus services crawl back to normalcy

People scramble to get enter a BMTC bus on the second day of the
Bharat Bandh at Kempegowda Bus Station, Majestic. (DH Photo/Satish Badiger)

The second day of the two-day nationwide strike called by All India Trade Unions hit the four state transport corporations hard on Wednesday with a revenue loss of about Rs 10 crore.

More than 10,000 trips were cancelled while miscreants continued to damage windows and windshields of hundreds of buses.

Earlier in the morning, bus services were partially restored across the state with officials running half of the scheduled buses. However, trips were cancelled soon after buses suffered damage. Thousands of passengers had to make alternative arrangements as trips were cancelled in the last minute.

The Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation reported that 46 buses suffered damages during the morning hours, following which officials decided to halt the operations. The corporation suffered a revenue loss of Rs 3 crore, slightly lower than Rs 3.5 crore the previous day.

Metro and Majestic

Even the ridership on Namma Metro, the only public transport with regular services, saw a dip as many companies and business outlets remained shut.

Thousands of commuters were stranded at Kempegowda Bus Station for long hours after the BMTC stopped the operations.

A few people got into heated argument with the BMTC officials over this.

“As the BMTC was operating yesterday, I thought the situation would be the same today and came to Bengaluru to work. But from the morning I am waiting here to go to Jigani. If I will not report to duty today, it is a loss of pay for me,” Sreedhar, a native of Gadag told DH.

It was a common sight where people would rush to the buses as soon as they arrived at the station.

From North Karnataka

Reports from several districts in North Karnataka showed people’s helplessness as commuting was cut off.

The anger on social media was palpable as many had to search for alternatives in the last minute.

There were no services in Kalaburagi, Raichur, Vijayapura, Koppal and Bidar for the major part of the day as North East Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NEKRTC) cancelled about 3,200 of 4,200 schedules. Sources in the corporation put the loss for the day at about Rs 3.5 crore. The KSRTC suffered a loss of Rs 2.42 crore on Wednesday.