It was refreshing to read Mihir S Sharma’s piece “Road rages” (Ticker, July 7). Once you let cars ply in Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor, cars win. As the writer has asserted, it is moving people that are important — and not moving cars. I wish Dinesh Mohan and his colleagues were more emphatic and aggressive about defending BRT than being apologetic to car users. We have lost the battle of trying to get car and other private vehicle users to use public transport. Now, our goal should be to give a dignified transport system to existing users and, hopefully, get poorer people to travel in our buses. We are nowhere near this modest goal. Lack of innovation and improvement in public transport has made travellers cynical and, so, they are always in search of alternate private modes. Since the costs are always on the rise, public transport always goes back to already dissatisfied travellers, asking them to pay more for the same old undignified service. Hence, the resistance to pay.
I must add here that we should treat the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) as a reality and that without it no other public transport mode will be effective. Yet, there is not a single transportation planner in DTC, let alone a transport economist. And you expect it to serve a complex and difficult city!
I would like to thank the writer for an article that supports BRT and public transport in an otherwise bleak and unsupportive environment. The trouble is, unlike power and environment, transport is divisible. The privileged can choose means of their own and the majority cannot share in the comfort and convenience of the privileged and the rich.
Sudarsanam Padam, Hyderabad
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