About the Blog
This is my diary....what I make sense of, around me. You'll find short prose on contemporary topics that interest me. What can you expect - Best adjectives? …. hmm occasionally, tossed around flowery verbs ?…. Nope, haiku-like super-brevity? … I try to. Thanks for dropping by & hope to see you again
August 14, 2010
Friends are showing off their brand new cars on Facebook & Orkut, and egging them are Banks that put hoardings asking them to ‘drive their dreams’. It is another commonly known fact that more than 75% of these cars on the roads are on borrowed money (read loans) i.,e these dreams are valid till the next monthly installment gets paid. Yet as more people pour on to the streets with their new fancy cars ,my immediate reaction is not to say ‘bus kar’ but say ‘Bus-de’.
The other day Montek Singh made this point poignantly clear while speaking to Karan Thapar on Devils advocate. He said one of the underlying objectives of the recent fuel hike was to nudge people to adopt to public transport. I guess he & others in the planning commission were taking note of the fact that there has been a sharp spurt in privately owned vehicles in India (it has increased from 6.8 million in 2003-04 to 12 million in 2009-10).
On the roads the signs of these strains are already clearly visible; increasing commuting times, diminishing parking spaces but more importantly ,as a local newspaper highlighted increasing stress in driving. Bangalore Mirror, the local newspaper had a cover story recently that struck immediate chord with me . It showed how randomly selected drivers, with sensors & biomedical readers attached to their bodies showed a spike in their BP levels as they drove through dense traffic areas in the city.
Urban public transport in metros like Bangalore has certainly gone up several notches with the introduction of modern efficient buses. Bangalore may not have a bus rapid transport system (BRTS) like Delhi or Ahmadabad but I certainly find no dearth of good Buses that drop me to the office & back. And for precisely for the reason the newspaper reported I have increasingly taken to BMTC. I know it may not completely remove the car out of the equation but as long as I find a Volvo picking me up & dropping me in close proximity to Home and office I see very many good reasons to adopt with regular frequency.
So Montek may be formulating fuel price policies but it is BMTC and their efficient facilities that has been a clincher. So try out this concept of Bus day & see how much of a difference it makes to diffuse stress levels. You could also making a big difference not only to the city but to your lifestyle as well.