Recently I came across a post by a Bangalorean, exasperated with the transport issues of the city. I couldn’t agree more with everything that was written in there.
I am not from Bangalore. Several previous visits to the city, way back in the last century, had left a fond impression of the place. There was a big gap in between. Then two visits in this one year made me wonder, whether this was the same city?
I agree that these recent visits were not to the main/old city, but to the fast developing outskirts area. When new townships are erected, one would expect a better and planned development. I guess the outer ring road was meant to ease off the traffic, instead it ended up creating more bottle necks at the cross roads.
The long drive from the airport is interspersed with halts — that’s natural. But as we almost reach the destination, there are long, unmoving stretches of stranded cars. Isn’t there any signal system, one wonders – because, at the cross roads, cars just rush in from all four sides and no one is ready to back off. And then it is a stand still — for hours!
This happens on a dry, normal day. God alone knows what must be the conditions during rains!
The airport cabbie pointed out how the traffic police was coolly enjoying his tea at a roadside stall — as if the traffic was moving smoothly and there was no need to bother about it! Our destination was within walking distance, but what about luggage?
If this is the plight of the visitors, I wonder what the office-goers must be facing everyday!
Now, doesn’t this resemble some nice, snowy scene – possibly from some foreign land? This is Bangalore traffic – stalled, because of, mind you, foam flying in the air!
I wouldn’t have believed this, had it not been the windshield of our family’s vehicle.
Traffic itself was not bad enough, this terrible pollution adds fuel to fire. Coming from a city (in)famous for its pollution, I thought I had seen every possible type. But foam flying in the air! It seems the effluence from the surrounding chemical factories is drained in the nearby lake (I think the name is Bellandur Lake) and then it rises from the lake like some monster and hinders the traffic. The traffic jams would be comparatively okay, if you consider its other implication — the type of health hazards which these flying chemicals would cause! Somebody mentioned that this foam also catches fire. Now I haven’t seen that, but if the effluence contains inflammable chemicals, then even that is possible.
If all this was not sufficient, then the auto guys are out to fleece you. For a distance of 1.5 to 2 km, they demand no less than 70 Rs. and when a currency of 100 is handed over, they return only a ten or so, and coolly drive off, saying ‘No more change’.
Two of our family members, who were visiting Bangalore, travelled some place nearby by auto. On reaching the destination, they gave a 100 to the autowala. Just as they turned around — whoosh! within a blink of an eye, the note disappeared and the auto guy insisted that they had never given him any money. One person can make a mistake or forget, but both the ladies clearly remembered giving him money. He was insistent and started creating a scene, finally succeeded in extracting more money.
Such blatant cheating! Never seen in the bad, bad (considered so by others, not me definitely) city of Mumbai.
On the whole, commuting in the city of Bangalore —— wouldn’t wish it even on the enemy!
Here is hoping for a change for better and hoping that the city would regain its lost aura and its lost title — City of Gardens!