Over 3,500 passengers stranded on roads daily
“Lakhs of passengers commute every day by PMPML buses. When the bus breaks down, passengers have to wait minimum half an hour. When the other buses arrive, they are almost full. The bus frequency is not good in the city,” said Rohit Bhise
PUNE: Outlining the pathetic condition of the Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) buses, 165 buses broke down on Friday as against the daily average of 70-75 breakdowns. Usually, around 3,500 passengers get stranded daily due to the breakdowns. However, Friday saw 8,250 passengers being left in the lurch.
As per information provided by PMPML officials, on Friday, 165 buses broke down, of which 70 belonged to PMPML and 95 were of contractors. The number is one of the highest this year, after continuous breakdowns (average 95-100 every day) reported during the monsoon season.
“Lakhs of passengers commute every day by PMPML buses. When the bus breaks down, passengers have to wait minimum half an hour. When the other buses arrive, they are almost full. The bus frequency is not good in the city,” said Rohit Bhise, a passenger, who waited for around 45 minutes on Karve road on Friday.
Madhu Kulkarni, another passenger from Kothrud, said, “When the bus broke down, the women passengers suffered more. Every day, I take the bus from Pune station to Kothrud and I get a seat. But when the bus broke down, we had to wait at least one hour to get another.”
However, the authorities claim that the bus breakdowns have reduced drastically. “During monsoon, we received several complaints every day. Now the system of towing the buses has improved. Whenever a bus breakdown is reported, a nearby depot is responsible for towing the bus to ensure that there is no traffic jam. We know that passengers have to suffer a lot, but we arrange other buses for them,” said a PMPML official.
“The transport body caters to over 12 lakh commuters daily and has not yet spoken about any plan to resolve the issue. The buses have not been properly maintained. The depot managers have been instructed to do the needful. The situation will improve soon,” said the official.