Bhopal City link limited’s (BCLL) public relations officer Sanjay Soni came up with a wise crack to justify the recent incident of BCLL’s bus catching fire with 35 passengers onboard. He said, “Even today, BCLL provides transport facilities at rate of Rs6 per kilometer. Public cannot enjoy “Pani-Puri” at Rs 6 in New Market (Rs 6 me panipuri nahi milti, hamlog, public transport provide kara rahe hai).”
Soni’s above response came when he was cornered on incidence in which 35 passengers had to jump from bus to save life. Soni further said, “We cannot say that so many buses are misfit for operations on roads as we carry maintenance on regular basis. When driver deposit the buses at depot, they provide details about the problems for maintenance. Currently there are 287 buses and 210 of them ply. There are two type of maintenance—regular and fortnightly or monthly basis. Minor snags are repaired in routine maintenance before departure on routes.
If problem is complex, then the buses are deposited for major maintenance.” However sources maintain that hardly few low floor buses of public transport are running smoothly and hassle free otherwise, almost all the low floor buses need daily maintenance in the state capital and the life of its passengers is at stake. Sources claim, nearly 25 per cent of low floor buses fleet always remain dumped for maintenance at Bus-Depot, Bhadbhada Road.
There are 287 low floor buses but 210 ply regularly. Nearly 77 buses are dumped for maintenance at depot. Fire in running public transport buses raised the finger over fitness of the buses and regular maintenance. Passengers’ instant comments were that management should replace the unfit buses from fleet. In such a poor maintenance triggered disappointment in the passengers.