Impractical ?ideal? timetable drawn
IF THE proposed timetable is any indicator, travel on the City bus service might turn out to be a mad scramble for commuters a la Mumbai locals rather than the smooth, hassle-free ride promised by the district administration. Even a cursory glance makes it clear that the timetable has been drawn by people who have never needed to use public transport.india Updated: Jan 25, 2006 14:35 IST
IF THE proposed timetable is any indicator, travel on the City bus service might turn out to be a mad scramble for commuters a la Mumbai locals rather than the smooth, hassle-free ride promised by the district administration.
Even a cursory glance makes it clear that the timetable has been drawn by people who have never needed to use public transport.
The schedule fails to factor in basic issues like office timings, average boarding and alighting time and displays a disturbing lack of familiarity with the dynamics of City traffic.
Take, for instance, stoppage time. The timetable allows merely one minute for commuters wishing to board and disembark on most stops. In other words, about as much time as it would take for one arthritic old lady to get on or alight from the bus.
As punitive measures are proposed for those who fail to stick to deadlines it is unlikely that bus drivers would have much patience with slow-moving passengers.
And may even zoom off before a commuter has fully boarded or gotten off, giving rise to DTC-like accidents where clinging passengers have been dragged on for hundreds of yards by speeding buses.
Let us move on to travel time. The City bus timetable averages 4-5 minutes between stops heedless of factors like road width and quality and traffic density.
To cite just one example, the schedule calls for buses to cover the distance from Niranjanpur to Palasia on the ultra-busy AB Road in 12 minutes; a time that would tax even a two-wheeler driver given that the stretch contains four traffic signals.
Assuming that the bus runs into even two red lights the driver would spend nearly a third of the allotted time idling on the intersection.
Timing snafus are expected to be more complicated on routes where the quality of roads is not as good as that of AB Road. Admittedly, the quality of roads within
municipal limits is bound to improve as a result of the Rs 165 crore road building and widening programme prepared by the Indore Municipal Corporation.
However, it would be at least three years before the project is complete. How, until that happens, are City buses going to adhere to the deadlines is the million-dollar question. When contacted project incharge of Indore City Transport Services Ltd SDM Chandramauli Shukla said the present timetable was an “ideal document” and changes would be made to it after carrying out “dry runs” on various routes to be serviced by City buses.
A MEETING of the Indore City Transport Services Limited (ICTSL) directorial board was held on Tuesday to fine tune arrangements for disbursement of City bus passes to be inaugurated by district incharge Minister Himmat Kothari on January 26.
The board moved to start a skeletal bus service by mid-February at the inaugural meeting at its new headquarters, the former Masonic Lodge that was acquired by the district administration for violation of lease conditions on December 31, 2005.
MLAs Mahendra Hardia and Laxman Singh Gaud, Transport Services Chairman cum Executive Director Vivek Aggarwal, Vice-chairman Madhu Verma, Municipal Commissioner P Narhari and DSP, Traffic were among those present on the occasion.
During the meeting the members were shown samples of the passes, designed along the lines of plastic credit cards. A demonstration of the ticket dispensing machines to be installed on City buses was also held on the occasion.