The wait is endless

The wait is endless

Increased traffic and constant congestion are part of our lives but there seems to be no solution to the problems. In such a scenario, most people prefer to use their own vehicles because public transport system here isn’t as good as it is in other cities.

Regular bus passengers have to deal with two major issues — the lack of frequency services and poor connectivity across the City. Apart from Whitefield, Electronic City and ITPL, the other parts of the City badly need good connectivity.

Experts on management of public transport agree that Bengaluru has a shortage of BMTC buses. MN Sreehari, advisor and consultant on traffic management to the Government of Karnataka, observes that there are only 7,000 BMTC to meet the needs of one crore people in the City.

“There’s a shortage of BMTC services in the City. There are other reasons such as narrow roads, shortage of funds and the lack of vision that have come in the way of the introduction of more buses,” he reasons. He thinks poor connectivity of BMTC buses has forced people to travel by the two-wheelers. “The number of two-wheelers has increased in the City because people can’t rely only on public transport anymore. The waiting period and travel time is longer when you depend on buses,” adds Sreehari.

People say that they would rather travel by their own vehicles than depend on public transport.

Jyothi, a student of Hasnath College for Women and a resident of Byappanahalli, says that she has to take two buses to get to her college.

“Connectivity is an issue. There maybe a lot of buses plying within the City but there are not many to bring people from long distances into the City,” he says.

Prithvi, an employee with Aegis, echoes Jyothi’s views when he says that the condition of BMTC buses is pathetic. “Not only are there very few buses, the frequency is also not as much as it should be. The buses are crowded most of the time. People are either forced to travel by their own vehicle, such as a two-wheeler or wait endlessly for buses,” he avers.

There are people like Arun VM, a professional who has consciously decided not to travel by his own vehicle and instead by bus.

He wants to know why the BMTC authorities doesn’t add to its existing fleet of buses. If there are more buses, people would be inspired to use the public transport system.

 “I’ve decided to travel by bus and have got a pass. But it is always so crowded that the fear of being pickpocketed is inevitable. There should be better connectivity and safety of passengers must top the priority list,” adds Arun.

Jacob, who works for a legal firm, is one among those who think that the bus connectivity is not bad in his area.

“I travel from KR Puram to the heart of the City on a daily basis and I find that there are buses every 20 minutes. It could be because KR Puram has a railway station and a bus stand as well,” he says.

The BMTC authorities concede that the connectivity and frequency of buses in the City needs improvement. CG Anand, general manager (technical), says that there are two broad categories of buses in the City — ‘Samartha Sarige’, that caters to long distances and ‘Samparka Sarige’ for short distance travel.

“We have identified 12 traffic-heavy corridors and will introduce more buses in those directions. We will also replace 500 old buses and add 150 to the existing fleet,” he adds.

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