Friday, October 8, 2010

BEST passengers see red over smartcard renewal

With reference to Mumbai mirror story below. I would like to add that why Government/ civic and other servants work for the betterment of the people.

Is BEST manager living in fantasy land of his own doesn’t he know that majority of Mumbaikars who work in private companies and travel by these bus their offices start by 9.30 a.m and they cannot go late like government employees.

BEST passengers see red over smartcard renewal

Mumbai: Several passengers who have monthly/quarterly passes (smartcards) are finding it difficult to get their cards renewed at the BEST depots because of ‘inconvenient’ timings.

Said Sion resident R Sridhar who is a frequent passenger, “After the BEST introduced paper passes recently, it started opening counters at the 25 bus depots from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm. Previously, when bus passes were being renewed by Kaizen company, the private counters were open from 8 am to 8 pm at the BEST chowkies and also at other locations near our residence. But this has now been discontinued.’’

So, office-goers find it difficult to get their passes renewed as there are long queues in the morning and the counter shuts by 4.30 pm. Most return home only by 6.30-7 pm.

“I went to the depot and returned twice as there was a long queue. You cannot waste an entire day on making a bus pass,’’ said one Laxman Moorthy.

Many Thane passengers have to pay toll charges (Rs 30 one way) to come to the Mulund depot for renewal of passes. “I had to make three trips to renew my pass for the AC Kinglong bus—from Thane to south Mumbai,’’ said a passenger who takes the bus from Teen Haath Naka.

A senior BEST official said that the Kaizen contract was cancelled and that is why the BEST staffers themselves were renewing passes for passengers. “As it is our own staff, we have fixed a timing for them and cannot change it unless there are instructions from our boss (general manager),’’ he said. BEST general manager Om Prakash Gupta was unavailable for comment.

“BEST can solve the problem by giving overtime allowance to its staff and keeping the counters open till 8 pm. It will be a great relief for passengers,’’ Sridhar added.

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