Coronavirus in Kalyan-Dombivali: KDMC’s hair-raising unsafe bus stops

Thane: Every single day, thousands of bus commuters living in Kalyan and Dombivali risk their life and limb at the Kalyan Dombivali Municipal Corporation (KDMC) bus shelters (aka bus stops). A spot visit made by this correspondent revealed that social distancing was out at sea as people crowded underneath unsheltered bus stops to reach towards Thane and Mantralaya. Worse still, the office provided by KDMC for its conductors and driver is dilapidated state.

With local train service being halted because of the pandemic, officer-goers have no choice but to use the KDMC bus services to reach their work places in Mumbai and Thane. On any given day, there are crowds of office goers at the city bus stop and MSRTC bus stop at Indira Chowk, in Dombivali.

“Regular travellers and office goers for essential services too face hardship due to less frequency of buses to Mantralaya, Thane and Kalyan," said Divya Acharya (29), who commutes regularly from Dombivali to CSMT.

S Ramchandran (36), a resident of Kopar said there is no shelter and sitting arrangement for the commuters.

MSRTC staff complained of the bad condition of their office allotted by KDMC. "The restrooms have plastic sheets as the concrete walls are broken,” said an MSRTC bus driver from MIDC, Kalyan.

"The auto-rickshaw drivers charge exorbitantly without going by the meter. They accommodate more passengers. The situation of the MSRTC stand at Dombivali MIDC is equally bad. The enquiry counter is shut. With the Ganesh Chaturthi festival, more passengers are likely to use the bus facilities,” said Ramchandran.

KDMT Manager Milind Dhat was unavailable for comment despite attempts to reach him.

Madhavi Phopale, public relations officer, KDMC was also unavailable for comment.

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