Your Space: State government should ensure ST travellers do not suffer due to MSRTC strike

Hapless passengers are left at the mercy of private transporters who have hiked ticket fares. Readers share steps that should be taken to ensure bus users do not suffer...
Commuters rush for seat in a private bus following strike by MSRTC staff, in Pune on November 11. (HT PHOTO)
Commuters rush for seat in a private bus following strike by MSRTC staff, in Pune on November 11. (HT PHOTO)
Published on Nov 14, 2021 04:31 PM IST
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ByNamrata Devikar

The strike by the staff of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) over grievances has left travellers stranded at bus depots even as the Bombay high court has directed the state government to resolve the issue. Hapless passengers are left at the mercy of private transporters who have hiked ticket fares. Readers share steps that should be taken to ensure bus users do not suffer...

Provide transport facility for outstation students

It is unfortunate that between the mismanagement of the state transport and the strike of the employees, the common man is paying the cost. The state transport (ST) is one of the cheapest and safest way of traveling across Maharashtra and inter-state. And the employees like drivers and conductors work hard to keep the system functional. In such a case, if the employees are not adequately paid then it seems only legitimate for them to go on strike. But the common people are suffering because of this. Especially, students who want to return to cities to rejoin colleges. They have to pay a lot of money to private transport vehicles for transport. The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) and the state government authority should ferry buses at fixed and lower prices to cities. For example, many students commute from Marathwada to cities like Pune and Mumbai. There should be special buses to help them reach their destination in time.

Sai Waghmare

Commuters suffer

Many people who travel to hometown during the festive season faced hardship because of the strike by the staff of the state transport (ST) corporation. When the Diwali vacations for students were cut off abruptly, many parents could not get access to state transport buses due to the strike. The local governing bodies and the state government should have thought about the inconvenience to commuters and arranged private buses for them. In my area many families paid as much as 1,000 per seat in private buses from villages near Aurangabad to cities like Pune, Nashik and Mumbai. Many families had to hire a car and travel, putting a dent in pocket. Even though the demands are justified of the staff, the government should take steps to ensure that families of economically weaker sections do not suffer during such times. Even today, only the state transport buses connect even the remotest village to the district town or city. The employees should be helped and the issues should be resolved soon.

Vidya Kulkarni

Regulate private bus fare during ST staff strike

I am stuck at my hometown in Ambejogai taluka. I was expected to reach Pune last week, but due to the state transport corporation’s staff strike there are no buses. And private buses are charging exorbitant ticket fare. Here with me, there are many other families and students who face the same plight. The state government should resolve the matter soon. And affordable buses should be started from major towns and cities to ease the situation for commuters. The bus fares should be regulated by the government during these times. Otherwise, private players will hike bus fares as per their wish which is unfair to students like me. The government should intervene. When we have such a strong state transport facility, it should be strengthened further so that there is more demand from citizens and plenty of choice for commuters to choose their mode of transport.

Rajesh Deshmukh

ST bus is the sole transport option for my village

I live in a village near Shirur town in Pune district. There is just one bus that comes to my village and it is run by the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC). Using this bus, I have finished my college from Shirur and this bus is the only reason why students from my village have access to higher education. Even school students from class 9 to 10 use this bus to reach their schools which are comparatively far away. This bus connects us to the rest of the district. And now this bus is not functioning. It has impacted all our lives because we have to walk at least 20 kilometres to reach the main road. There are private small vehicles, but their fare is higher than the state transport buses. Local government bodies should intervene and start immediate transport for students like me who are in remote areas and are in need of travel connectivity. Local governing bodies can take such initiatives which can help many people while the strike is ongoing.

Karuna Kadam

Foreign tourists were also affected

Commuters all across Maharashtra state are facing issues due to the ongoing state transport (ST) strike. One of my relatives were off to Ajantha for a vacation. And there due to the strike, they had to walk from the parking to the base of the caves which is four kilometres. While returning they had hired a bullock cart to travel the distance. There were foreign tourists who were also forced to do the same. This shows that due to the strike, even foreigners are facing issues and they are taking a bad image of our country with them. Hence, I think the issues should be resolved soon by the government. Having said that, I feel the strike is legitimate. The staff of state transport staff works day and night for us. They should be given sufficient pay and on time to ease their life. Due to the Covid pandemic, many people have suffered, including the bus staff. But, they resumed work as soon as transport services were resumed. The government should resolve the issues at the earliest to help commuters travel at economical cost.

Ashwini Limbane

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Wednesday, December 08, 2021