Justice AP Shah gone, MTC back to its old ways

All of us remember the sensation that was created by the order of the Madras High Court to Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) about four years ago, asking it not to order any more buses until it found a way to accommodate disabled passengers.

This somewhat scrappy report in The Hindu describes the result of that effort — MTC demonstrated some kind of contraption to judges AP Shah and Prabha Sridevan, and they were left unimpressed. They asked the MTC to go in for low floor buses.

It turns out that the going has been rough for Rajiv Ranjan, the disabled person who had petitioned the Madras High Court to enforce the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Opportunities) Act. In fact, things seem to have got worse for him after the MTC acquired the so-called low-floor buses that are still some generations behind the kneeling and bending buses that the disabled have become familiar with in the developed world, because the travel is now high-priced, but the service quality is not much different.

In any case, this aspiring superpower with wheelchair-bound leaders (remember Ajit Jogi), is yet to come up with a good transport system that matches the scale of the travel needs of its mass population. The shameful and unprofessional operations of the MTC are evident in this NDTV video, which shows the petitioner struggling to travel in 2009, three years after Justice Shah made his observations.

Needless to say, the print media don’t think such stories are worth following-up and would rather carry smiling pictures of leaders on all pages!


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