Do bus passengers in Chennai have to face injury and loss every time they ride? Unfortunately, that risk is very real.
For several years now, the Chennai Metropolitan Transport Corporation has not renewed its bus fleet. It has buses that are badly maintained, old and yet classified as “deluxe” – these charge more than twice the ordinary fare.
Today, I travelled from Liberty in Kodambakkam to Simpson’s on Anna Road – a 11 rupee fare by a deluxe route number 26 bus from the Iyyappanthangal depot (FLEET NO. IYI 2126). The broken-down state of MTC is reflected by this bus, as much as by many of the others in the 3600-odd in the fleet.
A look at the pictures shows how bad things are:
The seat is held together by crudely riveted plates that have sharp corners. My trousers were nearly ripped and torn by the edge of the plate.
Finally, when I alighted, there were some sharps just at the top of the door, which literally created injury. Luckily, it was not too deep.
I find there are others who have had the same painful, injurious experience on Chennai MTC buses. Here’s one tweet: