Bus Karo!!

Bus journeys everyday to college has only turned me furious at the Indian mind-set!

Time and again, we have been taught to be conventional, follow the mob and to just adjust with the existing situation. What has resulted out of this is a government that is so hierarchical that one needs all one’s life to finally get to meet the top officials!

The ‘adjust forever’ policy has also made us put up with a string of inconveniencies, in spite of a possibility of change. It might take us forever to bring about justice and straightforwardness into the system. But when it comes to something as basic as getting more buses for public use, it is quite an achievable task.

An empty bus, as stops pass by, turns into a human vending machine with bodies spewing out of its confines, precariously clutching on to what-might-be-at-hand(or who-maybe too!).

A bus that is designed to take around 56 people carries triple that amount or sometimes even more! Every morning, even after endless screams at the driver, conductor, foot-board travelers’ et al, things haven’t changed.

What one fails to understand is how people can allow strangers to occupy that private circle of comfort! How can, those limbs entangled, bags elsewhere, screaming-abusing scenarios, be borne, day in and day out, over the years?!

Agreed ours is just a developing economy. We don’t have enough funds to feed the masses; but how exactly CAN we improve the standards of living if we don’t WANT to set right even these little inconveniences?!

Where does practicality go hiding to when the bus is full? WHY does one decide to risk their life and let it ‘hang loose’ from the window’s metal bar?!

In a desperate attempt to make more money per trip, the conductors stuff in more and more people. One pays around 15 rupees in a deluxe bus and even then, all one gets are tummies of every size bouncing in front of your face, knees poking your sides and elbows punching your ears continuously! Luxury, sadly, cannot even be bought, when it comes to bus traveling in India!

Be it 5 or 45, whatever be the cost, the value and the comfort of traveling by bus is a responsibility the Government or the private bus company must upkeep. In a situation where environmental agencies are going pro-mass transport and urging people to hop on to their buses and trains, we must also make sure that people are safe and comfortable in these bulk transporters.

A serious view ought to be taken about this and every human being should make sure that no one comes invading your security. One deserves to travel in peace, with ample ventilation and leg space, elbow space and whatever space need be! Basic human rights demand this.

So the next time you travel by bus, do not hesitate to push away the hand that comes punching at your face. The more we make it uncomfortable for people to travel in a crowded bus, the less the crowd shall be. Apart from this, one should definitely rake up the issue with the conductor and the driver and hope for a better bus journey from now on.

Sandhya Ramachandaran