Private bus pick-up points, a recipe for chaos

Private bus pick-up points, a recipe for chaos
On the already congested city roads, the last thing commuters would want is a private bus flouting rules and triggering another traffic jam. The city traffic police are finding it tough to regulate the bus drivers and ensure smooth vehicular flow.

Frequent rains during the monsoon season have made commuting extremely tiring for Bengalureans. This problem is now magnified, worsening the congestion at choke points such as Kalasipalyam, Anandrao Circle and KR Puram.

Charan Nagaraju, a commuter from RT Nagar, explains the problem: “The issues related to private buses are about lack of monitoring safety measures and safety compliance, rash driving, overloading, extra luggage, illegal vehicles, pollution caused by unfit vehicles and untrained drivers.”

Often, congestion is triggered on arterial roads when the private buses stop for picking up or dropping passengers. This gets worse during the peak hours. Nagaraj contends the problem is not caused by private buses alone, but by the systemic failure of the local government in implementing reforms and monitoring rules and regulations.

Private operators, adds Charan, park their buses right on the roads, causing traffic jams at different locations within the city and on its outskirts. “The buses need to have clearly demarcated routes to ply and designated pickups points. These operators are acting according to their whims and fancies due to lack of a regulatory mechanism from the government's side.”

The private bus numbers have been on the rise over the last few years. They have passenger pick-up points in all major centres of the city. When buses arrive at these already crowded places, they create havoc on the roads. The vehicles are parked on the main roads for long durations.

Rahul Kumar, who travels frequently to outstation locations on work, has a suggestion. “Private buses can add smaller pick-up vans to their fleet. These can act as shuttles, picking up passengers from different locations and taking them to a main private bus stand on the city's outskirts. This will reduce a lot of public inconvenience,” says Kumar.

Sai Ganesh, who commutes between Bengaluru and Hosur daily, notes: “I have observed that the private buses operate without speed limits, unlike government buses that have their own rules. People commuting to office or returning home have their hearts in their mouths if they opt to travel by private buses.”
He attributes the perennial traffic chaos at the Silk Board Junction on Fridays to the private buses. They block the entire road, he says.

Ganesh should know. For, he is a regular commuter on Hosur Road. “Sometimes it takes more than two hours to reach Attibele from Madiwala as the private bus operators wait for passengers. They want to maximise profit for every trip, regardless of passenger count.”

Wrong parking, overspeeding, the nightmares

Public roads, private chaos


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