No we are not talking about “No Idea ? Get Idea” connectivity here. This is about human transportation in the city of Hyderabad. It is easier to get a job in a hi-tech bpo, easier to pay your electricity bill online through e-seva. But public transportation, ahem, not so easy!
Flash : “Salman Khan standing next to a cycle, with flowers in his hands. he is wearing a yellow shirt and sky blue jeans. Standing opposite to him is Katrina Kaif wearing a red salwar kameez with FULL make up and lipisstick.”
I do see a hell-lot of buses running around, but you see these don’t take me to my workplace. The bus-stops in Hyderabad don’t have the information on what bus takes you where. Infact no bus-stop in India has that info. So lets discount Hyderabad. But what is peculiar about Hyderabad is that the state transport corporation runs same route buses one behind the other. You see, when the clock strikes 10 am, there are lot of route no 10 buses, that ply passengers from Secunderabad station to Kukatpally. As if entire hyderbad wants to go only to kukatpally at 10 am !!! ???
Flash: “Turn right – Salman, Turn left – Katrina,Turn right – Salman, Turn left – Katrina,Turn right – Salman, Turn left – Katrina,Turn right – Salman, Turn left – Katrina,Turn right – Salman, Turn left – Katrina,”
Finally you board a bus that takes you atleast somewhere close to your destination. You have to purchase the ticket. I pity the ticket conductors here, they don’t have a separate seat. They have to keep standing, moving across from one side to another, punching tickets. But when it comes to tendering change, boy they make you panic. These guys are so busy while issuing tickets, despite carrying change they don’t settle it immediately. On the backside of the ticket, they write the amount that they owe you and sign on the below. You see, you cannot cheat him, that amount is tamper proof. Now what if you were reading an interesting article on the newspaper and forget to collect your change before getting down? Nothing, you lost your money and the ticket conductor will order a chicken biryani for his lunch that day. There is one rude conductor, whom I felt like slapping on the face. He behaves as if he is the owner of the bus and that all passengers actually report to him. Don’t know his name, but he is usually allotted route number 186. So watch out.
Flash: “I wish my auto was bigger sir, I could carry more passengers. Just look at them waiting for the bus and getting late for work! “
At times, the bus-driver turns moody. He gets irritated by the traffic and decides not to stop at your bus stop. You miss the bus, the next bus takes you to office just 20 mins before Lunch Time! The bus-drivers act funny at times too. Poor fellows get bored of driving all day. They get into a conversation with the ticket conductor and you start praying that the conversation gets over soon.
So one day you decide to chuck the city-bus and take a private auto instead. “No meter – fixed rate” is what 50% of the auto drivers do. “Already know the route – but fake the route for higher meter” is what the remaining 50% do.
In the era of non-connectivity a survivor takes birth. The “Share-Auto” is here to stay. It is not illegal, it is not afraid, it is not your enemy. It is dirty, it pollutes, but what the hell, even the UPA is dirty and polluting !
Flash: “Sir, please get down here and walk up the road for 5 mins, today the traffic cop is writing challans. You can board the auto once I ride past the cop!”