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New reforms to be implemented(BMTC)

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BusPublic Transport

Many have already posted about this topic in a different way so as to how make BMTC effective in terms of providing service.

Following are my views mainly in terms of operational:

1**  BMTC needs to do a survey all over the bangalore every year or atleast once in two year so as know the passenger demand
       and on basis of that different connecting routes needs to introduced also the no. of buses needs to be allotteed to that route
       number.

2** the officials and the depot managers should enforce a strict rule where in the crew should complete the allotted duty hours. 
      Because at present the almost many crew end the duty by 9pm. If we look at the statistics, around 60% in BMTC driver/conductor work for less than 7 hours 30 minutes (this inlcudes the break time too). 

NOTE: the above doesn't apply to GENRAL SERVICE BUSES AS THEY PLY FOR 10HRS.

3** The officials should frame new timings where in all crews need to work for 8hrs(approx.). Why approx.??? Becoz the completion of 8hrs may takes place at far away place as compared to the respective depot of crew. Hence approx 8hrs.

4** The SHIFT(DOUBLE DUTY-8HRS) SERVICE should start at 6:30am and end b/w 2:15pm- 2:30pm. The next should start at 2:30pm-2:45pm and end at 10:30pm-10:45pm. There by public will have bus service till 10:00pm for sure.
LOOK AT PRIVATE COMPANIES employes WHERE IN IF OUR LOGIN HOURS DOESN'T MEET 9HRS(Icluding the break), deduction in salary will take place or we need to extend our working hrs. 

5** The dept needs to cater to all sections of society with various types of services and henece needs to procure buses of various seating capacity.

6** It needs to stop dumping a particular route buses to one particular depot because that creates problem of public in terms of getting service.

Example: Consider Route 2- There are around 15 buses alloted for this route. Out of the 15 buses, 12 buses are alloted to depot -4(jayanagar) which causes trouble to public during noon and late night b/w 8pm and 9pm. 

How the trouble araises: As we know, in the double shift service, crew change takes place b/w 1pm - 2pm. So all the double shift buses will be either at JAYANAGAR 4th blk or at JP nagar 6th phase. Because of this people at the other end (MAJESTIC) will have to wait till 2pm and beyond for thses buses to come to KBS considering the crew change happpend at 1pm & then 1hr journey. 

Some examples 18(D-4), 215H(d-34),171(d-15/25) etc. 

BMTC officials needs to distribute(official term "allot") the buses of a particular route no. to depots along the route. 

7** They need to procure the electronic ticketing machine so as to stop misleading/ corruption done by the conductors. 
      It has more advantage if the whole BMTC org is computerized.

The buses need to be maintained in good condition(inner lighting, daily cleaning, daily washing throughly outside[not for the name sake], checking whether the rear brake lightsworking, proper board lighting, checking of  indicators rear, front, side top). People may ask why the above??? Just tell how ordinary buses brake light or indicators are in working condition except VOLVO. The signals are very important from genral road users point of view.

The above are my suggestions or ideas. I have posted it in a short form!!! ( Yes it is very lenghty but the idea I have in my mind can only be dicussed openly but can't be written)

Looking forward for many more suggestions and ideas from users/ readers.

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murali772's picture

It'll take a lot more doing

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@ Shashi Kumar  -  Excellent list you have drawn up. I can also add a lot more to that. But, when BMTC is being showered with all kinds of awards for what I would consider a mediocre service at best, and there are enough people in this world to applaud every 'achievement' of theirs, why do you think they should bother with you at all?

Yes, they did introduce the VOLVO services to BIAL (as recommended by some Swedish agency), and then extended on to other routes (that they are losing money is another matter); they did invite Dr Ashwin Mahesh onto their advisory panel, and introduced the Big-10 services as per his suggestion; they did hear out the PRAJA team that met up with them so many times, and implemented a few of their suggestions; they did implement one or two suggestions made by the Commuter Comfort Task Force, that I co-chaired; and they had perhaps also implemented a few of the suggestions made by any number of advisers/ experts that preceded all of us. But, all through, it's been these marginal 'improvements', mostly to satisfy some vocal sections; never anything comprehensive. And, while that kind of an 'improvement' may satisfy, and in fact delight yesterday's bus user, if you want to get toady's car and two-wheeler users to come on board, it will require a lot more doing. And, I can't think of a government monopoly ever matching up to the task. So, in my opinion, very clearly, the answer lies here.

In the meanwhile, let me not dissuade you from piling up your suggestions (for BMTC), like the rest of Prajagalu have been doing from the time we started, about three years back. Like it says in the song - hum hoange kaamyaav, aeeeeek din - keep trying (and praying); it may happen one day, though very unlikely in my lifetime (unless by some miracle).

Incidentally, I went into the Hubli-Dharwar Municipality pavilion at the 'Municipalika' exhibition last Saturday, and met up with Special Officer, HDMC, in-charge of the show. Amongst other things, I asked him about his opinion on the "Bendre Nagara Saakige", the private bus services operating between Hubli & Dharwar. He was all praise for the service, and readily admitted that it was far better than that provided by the SRTC there. So, I asked him why are the people not demanding that they be allowed to operate in other routes also. He said he didn't know, but that perhaps they should. And, that was from a government official. When I asked him if I could quote him, he requested not to. Govt officials have a reason; but, what reason do Prajagalu and the rest of the world have?

Muralidhar Rao
pathykv's picture

BMTC - Suggestions

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One thing we should insist is that BMTC should form 'Commuter Forums' and meet periodically to get feed back. Then they should systematically implement the acceptable suggestions within a time line.

Though BMTC officials say this is happening, I could not get any concrete proof.

K.V.Pathy

ss87's picture

One serious thing we require

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One serious thing we require BMTC to do is first among everything else allott the stages properly and adhere to the norms of keeping a stage every 2 kms once and not 500 mts once as it is happenig now

The other major point that BMTC has to do is take feedback from customers. They can keep drop boxes at important bus stops and terminuses where people could post the suggesstions. A weekly/Bi-weekly review of the same must be done and the needs of the customers must be adhered too.

BMTC takes too many suggesstions frm too many agencies. First was the Trunk routes and Metro bus services which were discontinued later. Next came the Big-10's doing the ame job as what a normal BMTC bus was doing and the failed Ho-Ho conecpt. Then came over the special ones which were again unplanned-the specials copuld have been run in the peak hour mainly rather than the whole day. Dont know how long more BMTC is going to do the trial and error method.

One main thing BMTC must do is extend the services. Why still follow majestic/shivajinagar/market concept. And worse of all why should all buses from market to Hebbal run into and out of majestic instead of cauvery bhavan and Golf course route. If that had been done MBS-1 would have been a good success-many people didnt board for main reason it didt touch majestic.

Erstwhile BTS had a good concept. Though the buses were very few there was uniformity in the routes that ran-all routes had equal buses to maintain the frequency of a bus every hour and what a conectivity-Jayanagar-Vijayanagar, Jayanagar-Yeshvantapur, Jayanagar-indiranagar were all connected. Now many of them are missing. Out of the routes only 60A, 75,77B,are few buses which are still running. The old Bangalore routes can be re-introduced on modified routes Eg: 7D from banashankari via Jayanagar, Sanjay gandhi, Bannerghatta road, Mayo hall and indiranagar to Jeevanbhimanagar or 1 from Jayanagar via Corporation to Malleshwaram/Yeshvantapur , 23A from 3rd phase via Jayanagar, Shivajinagar and mekhri circle to Yeshvantapur etc atleast connecting the old bangalore localities well . it is not that they dont have sufficient buses- havent utilized the same properly.

 

Also the major point as pointed out by Mr. Sashikumar is the lunch time. General shift buses as well as Night halt buses go missing in ths period inconvineincing,. Why shouldnt drivers and conductors change over at stops itself instead of buses retuning back to depots-All bus stands have time keepers-collection can be handed over to them and he can deposit the same in the depot while returning after making a note of which route gave what collection

pathykv's picture

BUS TRAVEL

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Simple Tips On Not Losing Balance in Buses And Subway Trains - Medindia News

http://www.medindia.net/news/Simple-Tips-On-Not-Losing-Balance-in-a-Buses-And-Subway-Trains-80366-1.htm

K.V.Pathy

murali772's picture

commuter forum

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@ Mr Pathy  -  There's this forum already. What I think of it I have mentioned in the post itself. But, perhaps it suits BMTC's purpose adequately.

Muralidhar Rao
imran_huq17's picture

Other side.........

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I feel we must also look at the other side on how to make the life of the BMTC employees better so that they can serve the public better.

A few things which can be looked initally can be .....How to Train the BMTC staff /Give them & their families better Medical Facilities/Create better working atmosphere /Better Stress Management /Education for their families/Nutrious & Healthy Food.............

I am sure there are many people in BMTC who genuinely work hard and have not got their due which they richly deserve. (of course as everywhere there are exceptions)

 

 

shashi kumar y's picture

commuter forum!!!!

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@ ss87

Sir, your idea is good but the issue is will the BMTC officials look into the suggestions provided.

Why can't we have a adalat type in every sub-division/ sector on the same lines of BWSSB/KEB.???

@Imran

Yes, the officials need to first take care of the crews.

Let me inform you all, there is no proper system or method in which crews are alotted the depot.

For ex: A driver who resides in Yeshwanthpur comes all the way to JAYANAGAR depot for duty.

It is the duty of the BMTC head(officials) to allot the depot which is nearest to the crews residence.

Even the above is one of the factor why the crew skip some trips or finish duty early so that can too reach home as early as possible.

 

@ others

What is the use of forums???  OR complaint section???

When the BMTC is not ready to listen up to public then why waste our valuable time in blogging or posting comments????

@Murli

Let me inform you one matter as you said even you were one of the memebers in giving feedback

Starting from Last June may bus day, I personally have been calling to Mr.VISHWANTH(ctm operation) & Mr. Sampangi Rame Gowda REQUESTING to introduce services to ITPL and E-city sector as JP Nagar (3rd,4th,5th,6th) phases consists of PG's and Apartment complex too. those residing are IT people.

But the reply i got from Sampangi Rame Gowda is, "you have buses from Banashankri to various parts, why can't you go their and board??? How can we provide you buses from your door step?"

Response from CTM" We will check out the feasibility factor and then decide. " So it is still happening from past 8 months. Apart from it , the officials asked us to appear @ the BMTC office.

But, one thing I came to know / understood is... BMTC is ready to introduce VOLVO buses instantly(within 1 week) even if demand is less.

Sir(murli), will you atleast help me( including SS87) in this issue. We have planned a great connectivity from JP NAGAR to all other parts considering many factors which BMTC thinks like the revenue.

 

shashi kumar y's picture

I will challenge

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@ Murli

 

Sir, Please note this. I have spoken to the same to officials and some others too about two places to take a survey if you(BMTC) doesn't belive the public facts.

I have surveyed two junctions namely
1) JAYADEVA Jn
2) Banashankri

JAYADEVA JN(Gopalan Mall)

You will observe that about 50% or more passengers from buses coming from the BANNERGATTA/GOTTEGIRE sector will alight in this stop and will either move towards BSK stop or the SILK BOARD STOP.
The same in reverse side too. Tjhis happens right from 7 in the morning to till night.

The same applies with Banashankri(KANAKAPURA RD).

There are no buses from those two roads to other parts except for KBS/CMT/SBS.

BUT THE BMTC OFFICIALS ARE NOT READY TO ACCEPT IT. I HAVE CHALLENGED THEM BUT IN VAIN.

 

ss87's picture

@Sashi kumar These are

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@Sashi kumar

These are junctions which we see regularly-it happens at all junctions. Once as I got down from Brindavan and waited for 500A a Janti-vahana came(scenario 2 years back itself). The bus was quite crowded(Jus imagine-Janti vahana very crowded-65 seating). But almost 60% people got down at K.R.Puram and I got a seat to travel all the way back home. It actually continued-people boarded at K.R.Puram to Marathahalli, Marathahalli to Ibblur, Ibblur to HSR layout, Silk  board and all other junctions we speak of. And today each of these junctions are getting a flyover so the effect to Bannerghatta Road is just going to spread.

 

It is time BMTC provides Circular feeders connecting the main road, Ring road, take the next main road and reach back via the inner road. This way connectivity will improve and people will als get empty buses for travelling. About  5-6 buses per route at 10 minutes interval will be sufficient to travel.

 

Also I think the present traffic officer (CTMO) doesnt look into the complaints so much. Earlier when I used to mail him within a week I used to get to see the action. But now that doesnt seem though I get a reply from grahakshakti promising action.

 

Regaring the suggestion boxes it must bemad emandatory to be looked officals. Atleast they can start by putting the same in Volo and move on to ordinary.

 

Also for the past 2-3 days one of my friends have complained against Uttarahalli depot-seems to be too many irregularity in services. And surprisingly when he called up BMTC he got a response saying the dpot has got too many complaints and BMTC will take action at earliest-only dont know which is the earliest

Naveen's picture

Bendre Saarige has problems too

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Bendre Saarige private operators mostly operate buses between Hubli & Dharwad (inter-city), where passenger volumes are higher. The city /rural routes remain neglected, apart from unionization by the private bus operators & other well known problems, such as bus owners with political connections who corrupt the system (similar to the blue-line in Delhi that has now been completely phased out).

So, 'privatization' or 'competition' in city transport in India is highly problematic. It'll surely bring along newer, bigger problems that might actually be far worse to cope with & cause even more inconvenience to the travelling public than BMTC. Improving management & operations of buses /routes by BMTC as detailed by ss87 & others appears the best option since they are being termed 'mediocre' (& not bad) even by those that are highly biased against BMTC!

See an earlier Hindu article here re. Bendre Sarige. Excerpts:

...the NWKRTC, which has jurisdiction over Dharwad, Belgaum, Karwar, Bijapur, Bagalkot, Gadag, Haveri and Koppal divisions, has hired 560 buses from private owners on lease. Among the owners who have hired their buses to the transport corporation on lease are those who enjoy political connection and are known to some top officials of the corporation who have since retired. And, this group has been able to get favourable terms in the contract. This has been one of the causes for the drain in the finances of the NWKRTC.

Everything was hunky dory till the Managing Director, Paramesh, started scrutinising the affairs with a view to plug the loopholes, which had proved to be a drain on its resources. Then the heat began to be felt and this led to the private bus owners declaring some sort of an open war.

While the Left-affiliated Karnataka Staff and Workers Federation has remained silent, the Karnataka State Road Transport Employees Federation has opposed hiring private buses and demanded that the arrangement be scrapped immediately. It has said that the NWKRTC put deploy its own buses instead for better control of the operations.

Meanwhile, with the Bendre Nagar Sarige running more number of buses on the Hubli-Dharwad route, K.S. Sharma, Working President of the Karnataka State Road Transport Employees Federation, has expressed surprise over the fewer number of buses being run by the transport corporation on the city route.

"We were promised by the Managing Director that more number of buses will be deployed to effectively meet the challenge thrown by the private operators,'' he said.

imran_huq17's picture

BMTC -->Official apathy leads to a death : Shameful Incident.

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BANGALORE: The situation at the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation’s Hennur depot was tense on Saturday, as drivers and conductors protested the apathy of a BMTC official. They alleged that the official restrained them from taking one of the BMTC drivers, who had suffered a massive heart attack, to the hospital.

They claim the delay had claimed the employee’s life. Mallikarjun (32), a BMTC driver on the morning shift, had a sudden cardiac arrest at around 7.30 am and had to be rushed to the hospital. However, when the employees tried to use the BMTC bus to take their colleague to the hospital, the depot mechanical head, R Ashok, objected.

BMTC buses are misused for political rallies to ferry MLA's to resort's and when an employee is dying the BMTC bosses try to STOP THEM.

Wonder why 108 was not called.....????

sanjayv's picture

@ Imraan

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Sad to read this.  Wonder why they did not simply dial 108?  There is no such thing as good as a well equipped ambulance and paramedics to save a life.  Hope that makes sense.

shashi kumar y's picture

Shame on BMTC org seniors

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Driver's death shows the sad or call it as the neglience done by the seniors.

A month back the same happened with the JAYANAGAR depot driver.

The condition or incidents shows how careless and corrupt are the senior officers.

To get a leave sanctioned  the crew needs to bribe the Depot manager too.

The BMTC has spent so much crores in building TTMC's but they could spent a little of that in building rest rooms in the depot of the crew to take rest and thus making them stress free.

As long as the BMTC doesn't take care of their crews, the public won't get benifited fromthe BMTC indirectly.

shashi kumar y's picture

Central office (shanthi Nagar)

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See the catch, HOW CAN A ARTIST CAN BE A DEPOT MANAGER???? On what basis the bmtc have given him the DM post????

The whole of BMTC central office officials really don't have the exposure to the realistic view of the transport mangement.  They are all been posted illegally.

@ss87.

You are right. The present CTM(Op) is careless/ iresponsible official.

I have made so many request to him regarding our area(JP NAGAR), BUT FROM PAST 10 months, but his reply is same.... Will look out.

I appreicate the previous CTM(Op), Mr.Dastagir Sharieff. That official was really amazing.

Has anyone got a response to your sms compaint/ request from any senior(top most) official from any dept as big as BMTC instantly(within 15 days)???

Yes, I have got it. I never made a single call in terms of speaking to CTM regarding a request instead I was sending 3 SMS's daily for 1 week to Mr. CTM(Op). I got a call on the 8th day from the CTM office that route survey official is coming down to the mentioned area.

The Ex. CTM was such a public friendly and acted to all complaints and reqwuests of mine.

 

murali772's picture

inspite of non-level playing fields

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Bendre Saarige private operators mostly operate buses between Hubli & Dharwad (inter-city), where passenger volumes are higher. The city /rural routes remain neglected

Very simply a result of the license - permit raaj. Facilitate their entry, and they will meet the demand far more effectively than any govt set up can

apart from unionization by the private bus operators & other well known problems, such as bus owners with political connections who corrupt the system

Ironically, that's exactly what the Hindu article has pointed out as what's wrong with the NWKRTC operations, while saying nothing adverse about Bendre Nagara Saarige operations. And, while I expect even an 'advanced fault-finding search' on 'Bendre Nagara Saarige' will not throw up anything more than that, BMTC's incapacity/ incompetence is for everyone to see all over PRAJA.
 

Muralidhar Rao
Naveen's picture

Imaginary Utopia!

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'License-permit raj', 'socialistic mindset of the people', 'uneven playing field', 'volvos losing money' (when it has already been reported several times that they are running well financially) etc repeatedly are not the best quotes to argue for privatization of public transport, nor are they the reasons why PT has not yielded the best for commuters in India (& probably in most third world countries where high urban bus fares are unacceptable).

If one accepts & agrees that it is a social need & an important obligation for the govt to provide cheap urban transport (whether private or public) that might not make much profit in relation to investments, the thought process would be better aligned to suggest how best to address solutions, rather than drumming urban bus service as a great business opportunity that would follow all the rules of other conventional businesses & become a roaring success immediately & without any doubt in terms of commuter needs.

For comparison, we could use registration of birth /death certificates or other such cheap public services where the fee has to be nominal & not wholly profit centered. Some degree of quality, punctuality & dependence is required to be maintained by bus services despite the low margins & with quite a few services losing money even as others generate profits.

Inviting private parties without proper control mechanisms will result in excessive competition between bus owners during peak hours with too few services or none during off-peak periods. Assuming that 'competition' will take care of all matters by themselves & provide every commuter the service he demands, even during low load periods is nothing short of imagination running wild.

And what about the wrestling & the catfights on the roads between bus owners to capture customers & between buses & other traffic, not to mention the poor service quality levels if bus owners are dependent only on fare collections for operating & maintaining the fleet ?

Whilst smaller cities such as Mangalore or Kochi can possibly manage with wooden floored buses, window tarpaulins & bench seats, larger metropolises can never operate in the same way since there is much greater diversity amongst commuters with many different expectations.

Trust those that continue to argue the case for privatization for urban buses focus better on these realities rather than continue to dream relentlessly of imaginary utopias.

murali772's picture

quite a peculiarity!

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So, are BMTC's 'baby steps' at reforms good enough? I guess the answer to that is a unanimous no. Then, can BMTC be made to speed up its pace of reforms? I think the answer I am getting to that is also a no. So, where do we go from here?

Status quo? Is sufferance our only destiny?

Private sector entry has set altogether new standards in telecom, airline, banking, insurance, and whichever services have been opened out to them. Even in inter-city bus services (inspite of all the artificialities in the licensing processes), a VRL alone operates 6 multi-axle VOLVO bus services between Bangalore and Mumbai daily, apart from various other grades of services by them as well as by various other players. But, somehow, when it comes to city bus services, apparently they just don't seem to be able to get their act together. All they can provide are wooden floored buses, window tarpaulins & bench seats, apart from resorting to wrestling & catfights. What is this peculiarity about public bus transport services that it makes it so? May be we should ask CiSTUP to do a study?

Whatever, we have to have solutions soon enough, since costs related to usage of individualised forms of transport, not just to the individual concerned but to the city as a whole, and in very many ways, are shooting up by the day (check this). And, like a wise man has stated elsewhere, may be "solutions are more feasible when obfuscation is broken down".
 

Muralidhar Rao
balu036's picture

 I would suggest the

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 I would suggest the following:

 

1. Agree with electronic ticketing system

2. strict reservation of seats for senior citizens and ladies

3. make the bus handicapped friendly for alighting and getting off a bus

4. make investment in the major bus terminus for a queue system for boarding into a bus

Naveen's picture

No peculiarity

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Can BMTC be made to speed up its pace of reforms?

I think BMTC will operate the way it is "handled" in the tug of war that is always on between various forces that include demands from various highly diverse groups of users, ministers, political considerations, etc etc. Despite these obstacles, I think it is doing a fair job.

For comparison, travel by buses in Mumbai is pathetic as buses are so heavily overcrowded, not to mention the unpredictability on most routes due to various ongoing construction works. The only places where dependability is better is at train stations since these are focal points. Compared with this, I think it is much simpler & better to use buses in bangalore along the G10 routes or from the three focal points. This may change with the Metro as buses would be made available from every station with common ticketing.

Travel by Public transport will always include some degree of "sufferance" since it can never get everyone to their doorsteps nor arrive at times that each commuter wishes. Hence, the criticism & complaints would always be heard by those that have "higher" inconveniences, in comparison since it can never be made pefect for everyone.

I think the complaint about last mile connectivity is also much exaggerated. Buses cannot always operate where development has taken place, like on extremely narrow roads. It's easy to blame BMTC for not providing "last mile" instead of questioning oneself as to why he chooses to put up business or offices on such narrow corridors after bribing officials!

new standards in telecom, airline, banking, insurance

I wonder why this illogical comparison continues & does not seem to end - this seems purely argumentative to support privatization. City bus services are low profit social services as already mentioned & cannot be compared with other higher profit businesses. In addition, there is also the problem of road safety.

What is this peculiarity about public bus transport services that it makes it so? May be we should ask CiSTUP to do a study?

Inter-city buses have fixed high fares & are profitable, similar to other businesses, particularly in high density sectors such as Mumbai-Bangalore. City services are far less profitable with low fares & some city services will even lose money, but would still have to be run. This is why it is challenging to come up with a privatization plan to get the best for commuters.

This might seem peculiar & confusing for those very few that continue to remain clogged with thoughts that privatization is the only cure for any & all problems, but to the majority, it is by & large, much better understood.

Vasanth's picture

Bus Karo

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A series of documents on Bus Transport in 3 international cities and few Indian cities including Bangalore. Nice reading:

http://cstindia.org/bus-karo

 

Few of the reforms such as monitoring stations should be implemented in Bangalore as well. 

murali772's picture

can we go by this perceived 'majority view'?

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I think BMTC will operate the way it is "handled" in the tug of war that is always on between various forces that include demands from various highly diverse groups of users, ministers, political considerations, etc etc.

That's indeed the problem. They should be providing only the basic services, targeted at the 'aam aadmi', if at all.

Despite these obstacles, I think it is doing a fair job.

Well, the general sentiment expressed here doesn't quite seem to reflect that

For comparison, travel by buses in Mumbai is pathetic as buses are so heavily overcrowded, not to mention the unpredictability on most routes due to various ongoing construction works. The only places where dependability is better is at train stations since these are focal points.

BEST's is acknowledged to be amongst the better bus service providers in the country.

Compared with this, I think it is much simpler & better to use buses in bangalore along the G10 routes or from the three focal points.

The Big-10 services are perhaps the only meaningful change that has happened in BMTC.

This may change with the Metro as buses would be made available from every station with common ticketing.

Common ticketing was attempted and then given up in Delhi. I don't know how far it's going to succeed here.

Travel by Public transport will always include some degree of "sufferance" since it can never get everyone to their doorsteps nor arrive at times that each commuter wishes. Hence, the criticism & complaints would always be heard by those that have "higher" inconveniences, in comparison since it can never be made pefect for everyone.

The dissatisfaction index with BMTC, as per the 'Bus Karo' report, on account of two key factors, are listed as - Punctuality / Reliability 46%; Accessibility (walking Distance) 28%. When that's the assessment of the current users, you can very well understand why the percentage of the trips made using BMTC is on a negative growth curve, or at best stagnant. That doesn't augur well for the city as a whole.

I think the complaint about last mile connectivity is also much exaggerated. Buses cannot always operate where development has taken place, like on extremely narrow roads.

The claim was that nobody will have to walk more than 500M to take a bus. Nobody is asking for more than that. And, of course, you can't be made to wait there indefinitely too.

It's easy to blame BMTC for not providing "last mile" instead of questioning oneself as to why he chooses to put up business or offices on such narrow corridors after bribing officials!

Houses in narrow corridors are OK, I presume. Anyway, that's all that the poorer sections can afford.

City bus services are low profit social services as already mentioned & cannot be compared with other higher profit businesses. In addition, there is also the problem of road safety.

Can you not say the same applies to water, power, schooling, healthcare, etc, too? Then, would you recommend their re-nationalisation of these services too?

Inter-city buses have fixed high fares & are profitable, similar to other businesses, particularly in high density sectors such as Mumbai-Bangalore. City services are far less profitable with low fares & some city services will even lose money, but would still have to be run. This is why it is challenging to come up with a privatization plan to get the best for commuters.

The private sector has met the challenge fairly effectively everywhere else. Why deny them even a chance here, atleast in areas where the BMTC is not even in the picture (like here)?

This might seem peculiar & confusing for those very few that continue to remain clogged with thoughts that privatization is the only cure for any & all problems, but to the majority, it is by & large, much better understood.

I don't know if this actually represents the majority view. But, if it's true, and BMTC improving itself on just a "Hindu" rate, I guess the future for the ciy is fairly bleak.

I was seriously considering getting into the business, in a tie-up with a business house, if the government gave me a licence. Even as a social entrepreneurship, I see enough prospect in it, particularly with the ever growing demand, given the inevitability of cities having to clamp down on the usage of cars and two-wheelers. Alternatively, I have now to think of investing money with my Honda dealer friend, and reverse my strategy. Of course, I can see it working only in the short term, since anyway, within another five years, I'll have to pack up from Bangalore.

Incidentally, on the question of 'Volvos losing money', the following is what the 'Bus Karo' study has to say at page 26 - "Regular buses are earning enough to cover costs whereas the AC buses are earning substantially less than operating costs". And, license-permit raaj, uneven playing field, and Socialistic mind-sets are all very much facts of life, which anyone who wishes to can readily observe.

 

Muralidhar Rao
Naveen's picture

Sold on city bus privatization

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They should be providing only the basic services, targeted at the 'aam aadmi', if at all.

Lowcost, subsidized Public transport is not just for "aam aadmi" - it should be available for all classes in this era of heavy road congestion & environmental concerns, just the way PTs are everywhere else in the world. Are you suggesting that BMTC must only cater to the aam aadmis whilst private operators must run volvos for non aam-aadmis ? Well then, why hasn't this happened in Mangalore or Kochi ? It's the state undertakings that are running volvos there since the private bus companies cannot afford the so called private volvo city bus operation that you keep claiming is profitable repeatedly.

BEST's is acknowledged to be amongst the better bus service providers in the country.

The "acknowledged" is history & a thing of the past, going by the flurry of awards being won by BMTC each year & the poor showing of BEST in recent years (including heavy losses as pointed out by you in another context when it suited your position well then).

Common ticketing was attempted and then given up in Delhi. I don't know how far it's going to succeed here.

Common ticketing is already working well in Mumbai & many cities abroad. If it failed in Delhi, it don't mean that it'll fail in Bangalore.

The dissatisfaction index with BMTC, as per the 'Bus Karo' report, on account of two key factors, are listed as - Punctuality / Reliability 46%; Accessibility (walking Distance) 28%. When that's the assessment of the current users, you can very well understand why the percentage of the trips made using BMTC is on a negative growth curve, or at best stagnant. That doesn't augur well for the city as a whole.

Kindly provide the full report or a link to it here & not just some excerpts that suit your argument now. Further, a large city like Bangalore needs many modes of PT & blaming BMTC endlessly & claiming that privatization will cure all PT problems of the city is bizzarre & absurd (as already stated several times previously).

The claim was that nobody will have to walk more than 500M to take a bus. Nobody is asking for more than that. And, of course, you can't be made to wait there indefinitely too.

BMTC may have claimed so, but they should have added an important phrase as well - "wherever possible". They are running buses in the interiors on narrow roads where buses can maneuver, but there are large sections with only alleys & deprived of even paving on such narrow roads where large buses cannot be run. For this, I understand they are sourcing minibuses that can be retrofitted to meet their requirements, but I think even this will have limitations.

Houses in narrow corridors are OK, I presume. Anyway, that's all that the poorer sections can afford.

As if private operators are doing any better even when roads are available in poorer areas - in Ullal & Bejai & Maroli (all in Mangalore), commuters have to walk at least 700-800m to get a bus, sometimes more. Same in Udupi. Buses (& any form of PT) can only operate where there is substantial need /traffic, & not to everyone's doorstep as claimed by you of the private sector.

Can you not say the same applies to water, power, schooling, healthcare, etc, too? Then, would you recommend their re-nationalisation of these services too?

Water, Power, Schools, Healthcare - yes, subsidy will be involved for poorer sections. However, these operate independently & separate facilities for poor & the middle classes can be operated, private or public, unlike buses that run on roads also used by other motorists, pedestrians, etc.. When profits are in direct relation to speed & competition on the streets, it results in the phenomenon that we all now know as "blueline".

Talking about education or healthare - IISC, IITs & IIMs are the best institutions - govt owned. Likewise, AIIMs is one of the best hospitals (again govt owned). So, it doesn't necessarily mean that all govt owned institutions are bad. Some are the best in their league too, primarily due to govt support & subsidy in some form or the other.

The private sector has met the challenge fairly effectively everywhere else. Why deny them even a chance here

Privatization of city bus services has resulted in chaos, deaths & heavy corruption, not to mention the depravation of services to commuters. Even if the issues of heavy coruption are tackled, there will still be the problem of road safety which has been a nightmare to tackle almost all over the world. There is no point in arguing for city-bus privatization unless solutions for all of these are at hand first.

I don't know if this actually represents the majority view. But, if it's true, and BMTC improving itself on just a "Hindu" rate, I guess the future for the ciy is fairly bleak.

Strange that you still continue to argue even after the abysmally pathetic response to your petition for privatization. So, what is the majority view acording to you ? Want to start a new poll, then ?

People in Mumbai are asking about BMTC's numerous volvo buses & the "most vibrant " city that Bangalore is now in the country (as declared recently by a study). Those that blame BMTC & wish to leave because of it are very welcome - it'll perhaps make the city much better without them :)

imran_huq17's picture

BMTC : Driving others off the road

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Number of traffic violations involving BMTC buses is climbing every year

Details here

what an explanation from the BMTC official .........I wonder if at all they do any analysis for each of the accident and learn any lessons not to repeat the same again.

BMTC director (security and vigilance) J Arun Chakravarthy said, “The number of cases does not mean our drivers are always at fault. If you consider the increase in the size of our fleet, the percentage of traffic violation cases has come down over the years.”

Regards,

Imran.

murali772's picture

can't beat them? Join them!

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So, the moral of the story appears to be that since private operators do not/ will not come forward to provide high-end bus services, because they are not (cannot ever be) profitable, the state should provide it, allowing for necessary subsidies, in the interest of reducing congestion on city roads, as well as safety. And, this argument does not hold for other services like water, power, schooling, healthcare, etc, since unlike with all of them, the buses run on the same roads as all the other vehicles.

So, that's what is 'peculiar' about PT, which is the point I was trying to make earlier. Whatever, let me re-affirm that I am not the least convinced.

About BEST   -   Though, there are enough Mumbaikars who talk highly of BEST, I am not supportive of monopoly there, either. In fact, I am not a supporter of any kind of an 'un-natural' monopoly anywhere.

About "common ticketing"   -   it will require the same level of technical capacity amongst the participants. Delhi Metro gave up on NDMC (the bus service provider) on this aspect. BMTC has a long way to go too, going by this and many other reports.

Excerpts from 'Bus Karo' report    -    These were from the report to which Vasanth had provided a link to in his post made on the 22nd Feb (just scroll above).

private bus services in Ullal & Bejai & Maroli (all in Mangalore)

Whatever, their services are better than the KSRTC services in their monopoly domains. And, pray, why is KSRTC confining itself to just high-end services, leaving their constituents - the aam aadmi at the mercy of the 'private sector marauders'?

Talking about education or healthare - IISC, IITs & IIMs are the best institutions - govt owned. Likewise, AIIMs is one of the best hospitals (again govt owned). So, it doesn't necessarily mean that all govt owned institutions are bad. Some are the best in their league too, primarily due to govt support & subsidy in some form or the other.

So, we now get into the public vs private argument - enough of that has already happened here already, and it's best confined there.

Privatization of city bus services has resulted in chaos, deaths & heavy corruption, not to mention the depravation of services to commuters.

For all that, here's a mother who is quite happy using the Kochi buses even when travelling with her infant child - check this

on majority view

Well, even if the majority of Prajagalu are perhaps not ready yet to demand opening up the services to the private sector, going by the contents here, they seem to have more or less given up on trying to improve the BMTC services, quite like their many prdecessors. So, what now remains perhaps is to start a "BMTC abhimaanigala sangha" for this 'most vibrant' organisation in this most vibrant city, alongwith the "BESCOM Commuter Advisory and Facilitation Committee", cited here, whose aims and objects are more or less on similar lines.
 

Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

ineffective training

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Excerpts from the same Bangalore Mirror report, cited by Imran, above:       

The drivers, however, have a different take on the issue. One of them, Kumar, said, “We are always under pressure. If we do not complete a certain number of trips, we face questioning by depot officials. Traffic in the city is a nightmare. In order to complete our workload, we are at times compelled to jump signals.

So, what has all the training been about?
 

Muralidhar Rao
dvsquare's picture

That's where I always say, BMTC has to make itself attractive

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They have to make themselves attractive, by being the role model of everything, be it a traffic follower. I mean,  people should know BMTC about its good things and hence public transport usage will automatically follow. Right now, most of the people in the private vehicles (lets only take disciplined ones or law-follower drivers) hate BMTC buses, mostly because how they are driving the roads, how they are jumping signals, how they change lanes, don't care about any vehicle on the road. BMTC buses has to improve it, they have to do something about it.

You know what, the day when we had a Praja Meet at railway station, while I was going to railway station, I was like driving defensively on the KG Road, I forgot all the lane driving rules (DDC), as I was just trying to defend myself from BMTC buses all around me, they were driving like lawless monsters despite having such a wide one-way road.

Deepak

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