BANGALORE: While passengers of Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation’s (BMTC) Vayu Vajra get new benefits like browsing the internet on touch-screen tablet PC installed in the buses, conductors and drivers of those buses are not a happy lot. They have been slapped with show-cause notices for not maintaining the electronic gadgets. As many as seven conductors and drivers received notices, issued by honchos of BMTC Volvo division, which hold them responsible for the damages.
As a pilot project, Information, Communication and Entertainment on Wheels (ICE), was adopted by BMTC along with EAFT, and electronic gadgets were installed at the back rest of the seats. About 25 buses plying between Bangalore International Airport and Electronic City have these devices. Each bus has 22 such devices. BMTC sources said so far six devices were stolen and more than 65 have been damaged. The rest of them are not in good condition.
A conductor, on condition of anonymity told Express, “Officials have taken us for a ride. How can they expect us to keep a watch on those gadgets when we have our own work? They have threatened to take disciplinary action against us and have changed the bus route of some. Our promotions are under threat due to this.”
The conductor further said, “No one maintains these devices. In the initial days, a few from the company which installed the devices maintained them, but subsequently there is no maintenance.”
When Express contacted BMTC MD K R Srinivasa, he said that he could comment only after looking into the matter.
Express spoke to a BMTC official who said, “The company which installed these devices has incurred a loss of about `80 lakh due to damages and thefts. It is the responsibility of the conductors to inform commuters not to damage the device.”
Hundreds of passengers commute by our bus. How can we keep an eye on every passenger? We are fully occupied with our work, conductors contended.
They further added, if BMTC or the company which installed the devices did not take responsibility to maintain the service, conductors of remaining buses too had to face the brunt. They urged the officials to deploy executives who could guard the devices in the bus.