Enjoying a free ride

Last Updated : 24 August 2010, 11:08 IST

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Here is some good news for the passengers travelling to and fro from the City Railway Station to the Majestic Bus Stand.

They don’t need to quarrel with the auto drivers for over charging them anymore. Nor do they have to fall prey to the pickpockets at the underpass. Since June, the BMTC has been offering a free bus service to the commuter from the railway station to the bus stand and back.

There are two blue-coloured Swaraj Mazda buses with a board saying ‘Free Service’. One runs from 4.30 am till noon while the other runs from 8 am to 8 pm.

The 35-seater bus also has a separate stand for luggage. People can also avail the same service from Yeshwantpur Railway Station to Yeshwantpur Bus Stand.

The service was introduced as a result of a Memorandum of Understanding between the BMTC and the South-Western Railways to provide a better service to the commuter.
V Krishnappa, the traffic controller in-charge of the bus service, says many people are not aware of this facility and hence, haven’t been using this service.

“We are trying our best to popularise this facility, especially among people from other states to help them overcome the difficulties they face while reaching the bus stand. Whenever passengers come out of the railway station, we make an announcement about the free service. This sincere effort needs publicity,” he says.

“As many of the local express trains arrive in the morning, the bus gets crowded during that time. Buses run even if there are a few commuter, without making them wait for long. We also offer the service from Majestic to City Railway Station,” informs Prakash, one of the bus drivers.

The service is a boon for aged, physically challenged people, patients, commuter with small children and also passengers carrying heavy luggage.  “I didn’t know about this free service. When I came out of the railway station, someone was speaking about this facility. I felt relaxed after seeing the bus. I thank the BMTC officials for saving us from the clutches of the arrogant auto drivers,” says Shobha, another commuter.

Sujith, a businessman says, he is getting the maximum benefit out of this service.
 “I keep on visiting different cities for my business purposes, mostly by train. I fear to use the subway from the City Station to Majestic as there are many pickpockets. Though it’s a minimum fare from the Railway Station to Majestic, auto drivers ask for Rs 40. Even if this service is charged, I would not mind,” he says.

Rajesh, who has come from Chennai to the City in search of a job, is very happy with the service.  “I had been to the City several times. All those times, I paid Rs 30 to 40 to the ‘rickshawalas’ to go to Majestic. But this time, I was pleasantly surprised to learn about this free service,” he opines.

Published 24 August 2010, 11:08 IST

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