The 'buck' stops here...

Harassed lot

The 'buck' stops here...

Shelling out: Most of the time those who travel by buses don’t get the change back.

Buses are known as the common man’s mode of transport because of the moderate cost involved. Travelling in buses is not exactly a comforting experience and at  times the conductors make it even worse. As angry commuters tell Metrolife, many times conductors expect the passengers to carry the exact money as the ticket price and don’t react pleasantly if you don’t have change.

“Most of the time, I always carry the change but on days I don’t have the exact amount, the conductors don’t return the money. If it is one or two rupees, sometimes they don’t even write the amount on the back of the ticket,” says Ajit Das, who has been in the City for ten years. Not returning the change is a common occurrence. “In the buses with no conductors, the driver says he will give the change later and when you have to get down, he pretends to be busy or says he has no change,” says Hari, a professional. “The worst is when they tell you they can’t return the change when you have almost reached your stop. You can’t even pick up a fight as you may miss your stop,” says Amit, a student.

It is understandable when the conductors don’t have change at the moment and ask for time before returning the money but sometimes, they are downright rude. “There have been times when I have been asked to get down the bus when I have not had the exact change,” says Ajit. “In buses if you give a Rs 50 note, they just refuse to give you a ticket itself,” says Hari. “I have started using a pass to avoid this nonsense but I have seen people having problems and have been a victim myself. Different types of people are treated differently. The conductor usually has a say on people who are a little soft in nature,” says Lakshmi Narayan, a government employee.

The bus conductors give various explanations for this behaviour. “For every 100 passengers in a bus, there is just one conductor managing them. It is the responsibility of the passenger to come and collect the change. Most of the time, we look for the passenger and give him or her change. But on days when the bus is really crowded, there have been times when I have forgotten to give the change and the passenger has forgotten to ask me as well,” says Vijaylakshmi, a bus conductor. “People need to understand that when you produce a Rs 100 or Rs 500 note early in the morning, it is impossible for us to give change. It makes our life and their life simple if they enter the bus with the right fare,” says Prakash Bharathi, another bus conductor. While there seems to be no solution to the problem, it is best to carry a few extra coins to be on the safer side.

Liked the story?

  • 0

    Happy
  • 0

    Amused
  • 0

    Sad
  • 0

    Frustrated
  • 0

    Angry