Bus Stop or Parking Lot?

Bus Stop


GUWAHATI: Traffic management is quite messy in Guwahati! Lack of awareness on the part of commuters and lack of stringent vigil on the part of traffic managers, it seems, have done it all. The traffic situation in the smart city in the making has come to such a pass that there are hardly any distinguishing features between bus stops and parking lots at many places. Whoever may be at fault, it is the commuter who has to bear the brunt of the mess.

The instant case at hand is Chandamari Colony bus stop in the Chandmari area in the city. The bus stop has facilities for commuters to sit on and get themselves saved from the scorching sunshine or rain water. The shed erected at the bus stop is as strong as most of its kind erected elsewhere in the city. If everything goes as it should have been, traffic woes in the city could have been reduced to a great extent. However, that is not happening for a number of reasons. What’s glaringly visible in the picture that backs this news item is – it is very difficult for a new comer to the city to distinguish if this structure (shed) at Chandmari Colony is a bus stop or a parking lot. A number of cars of all hues are seen parked in front of the bus stop. No space is left for city buses to stop and pick up passengers from this spot. This reporter who went to this bus stop on Tuesday saw that buses that are supposed to stop just in front of the shed are being stopped far away from it. Strangely enough, commuters who are supposed to travel by city buses are seen standing under the scorching sun much ahead of the bus stop where buses stop to pick them up. Thus the very purpose of erecting such sheds in each and every bus stop in the city has not been served. Such stops, however, are used by some homeless people to take shelter at night.

This is a common scene in almost each and every bus stop in Guwahati. When asked on this menace, Jitul Barman, a senior citizen of Chandmari, said: “The blame should go to the public in general. They’re educated and they know all rules and regulations. It is common civic sense that cars can’t be parked in front of bus stops that are meant only for vehicles carrying passengers for picking up commuters. Commuters who stay away from bus stops to board city buses should also be blamed. Pointing the out the accusing finger to the traffic managers alone can’t solve the menace. For conscious people traffic signals and other objects like barricades, cones, dividers and the like are enough to discipline the smooth movement of vehicular traffic. However, that’s not happening in Guwahati.”