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Old 2nd January 2014, 20:20   #31
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

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Originally Posted by amtak View Post
Venkat,

I believe the Metro or Mono rail would not do much. I doubt the route planning that has been done with that.
The route planning is definitely questionable, while the lack of proper infrastructure has contributed to the issue, Mumbai is definitely in need of the monorail with the network of Delhi Metro.

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Originally Posted by silverado View Post
All the buses come equipped with power steering. Public do not think much about buses and dangers related to overcrowded bus, and you cant blame them about it.

Metro surely will be a relief at least for people who ride on route 340, and majority of local travellers who travel to dadar to switch lines.

OT : As far as PMPML is concerned, it is by far the worst in the entire country, there was a survey which proved it.
I am sure a thread on PMPML bus torture would run in to many more pages than this one.
During my college days, had gone to my native place. Had boarded an over crowded bus & I was standing next to the driver. He actually asked me to help him turn the steering & believe me it was really hard.

Ever since I was under the impression that transport buses were not equipped with power steering (excep the hi-fi buses & volvos).

Moreover public needs to be educated regarding the danger involved in boarding overcrowded buses. Also switching lines at Dadar is really an accomplishment, I have done it few times & it feels like you "have done it".
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Old 5th January 2014, 19:21   #32
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

Most of the things which need to be said have already been said in the replies till now. But still, posting my 2 cents as a regular traveler and observer of BEST for the past 7-8 years.
  1. Absolute lack of innovation. No traces of it in any department - be it passenger amenities, bus procurement, body building, maintenance etc. Will cover some of these points in further detail below. If anything, they have been lame attempts which went flop (case in point being the GPS based bus tracking system installed in AC buses, flagged off with much fanfare).
  2. The design of bus bodies is fine. Ergonomically there are absolutely no issues. But build quality has gone down over the years instead of improving! Classic examples are Tata CNG buses of MH 01 LA 6xxx series. Prolonged journeys in those buses will definitely give hearing problems. They rattle like hell. Those who have travelled in one will understand what I am saying.
  3. Dead management? Again somewhat a corollary of point #1. There is no out of the box thinking. No innovative schemes/ideas being introduced. It seems they are content with whatever is going on right now.
  4. Maintenance levels have certainly gone down than what they used to be a decade ago. An example: Imagine the plight of drivers driving these. Spare parts availability is a big issue. Many buses lie idle at depots waiting for parts.
  5. Cerita Kinglong buses - Nothing needs to be said about them! Extremely "well known" buses
  6. The management claims that BEST is running in losses and is on the verge of bankruptcy. I think that this claim might be exaggerated. Sure, they would be in losses, but not so much. If they cannot manage their finances even after frequent fare hikes, they themselves are to blame.
  7. AC bus fares. They are simply too high for the services provided. Keeping them at such levels is like digging one's own grave, especially given the reputation of Kinglong buses. Neighboring NMMT AC fares are cheaper, and they run Volvos. At these levels, patronage for AC routes would not be sustainable. A monthly pass costing Rs 3000 is simply too expensive.
  8. Their schedules go for a toss due to heavy traffic. This leads to extremely erratic frequencies at times.
  9. Poor route planning. Some of the so called "Express" routes are not worthy of the tag "express" at all.
  10. Many short distance passengers are lost to share rickshaws as BEST is unable to provide decent frequency on many sectors.
  11. Corruption. This is definitely present big time. Nothing else can explain the purchase of Kinglongs in such huge numbers. Kinglong procurement is just one example.
This is all I can remember right now! If I remember something, I will definitely add it later. I have quite a lot of pics of poor maintenance, but I do not want to clutter the thread with 40+ photos. The rules do not allow me to post link to the album either.



Quote:
Originally Posted by amtak View Post
Just to add, their Fort ferries are in horrible condition but, the same star buses run nicely on TMT and VVMT corporations. It is definitely a case of buying cheap spare parts.
Amtak, these starbuses with BEST are different than those operated by TMT & VVMT. TMT and VVMT buses are Tata Marcopolo starbuses, while those with BEST are a much older version having just 100-110 hp on offer.

The TMT & VVMT buses are those which have been purchased across the nation by various corporations like DTC (they have CNG version), BMTC and a few others in KA. The two models are as different as apples and oranges. It is incorrect to compare the two.
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Old 6th January 2014, 00:31   #33
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

totally agree with the above post. Route planning and bus build quality are very bad.
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Old 6th January 2014, 22:00   #34
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

A slight different opinion on this from my side.

I invite you guys for a ride in Pune's famous PMPML buses. You would be delighted to be residing in other cities. The worst city buses one can ever see. These are washed on every Dasera by the bus driver and washing means: Only the front show is washed. The Front of the Bus is red and the rest remains brown. Whenever there's a broken window pane, it is replaced with a metal sheet! You get them Marcopolo buses, they replace the windshields with one from a pre-independence scrapped bus.

The Municipal corporation had provided these goons with AC volvos for some time and they look no better than a 20 year old AL or Tata. On the flip side, whenever i get a chance to travel to Mumbai, i am always left out thinking: why can't buses in Pune be as spic and span & well maintained as the BESTs.

Where accidents are concerned, even we have been part of one or more many a times. Driving a 60 feet long piece of metal with more than 50 people on board on streets filled with idiots who do not give a damn to whatever comes their way is a ask! One cannot expect a accident free history. The thing that has to be considered is the cause of accident. I am sure that people would be amazed to hear that a double decker bus toppled in an attempt to save a IDIOT on two wheels talking on his cell phone while crossing the road. But none of us try to find it out

I opine BEST is the 'BEST' managed bus service in the country today!
Just my opinion though.
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Old 7th January 2014, 11:08   #35
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

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Originally Posted by AkMar View Post
Amtak, these starbuses with BEST are different than those operated by TMT & VVMT. TMT and VVMT buses are Tata Marcopolo starbuses, while those with BEST are a much older version having just 100-110 hp on offer.

The TMT & VVMT buses are those which have been purchased across the nation by various corporations like DTC (they have CNG version), BMTC and a few others in KA. The two models are as different as apples and oranges. It is incorrect to compare the two.
Yes, I noticed that. StarBus and Marcopolo; My bad!

That's brings me to the question of Why is it that every BEST purchase is plauged with faulty machinery? Where in smaller muncipal corporations are making good money with whatever limited resources that they have. As rightly mentioned by you, corruption definitely needs to be cut down.

Last edited by amtak : 7th January 2014 at 11:15.
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Old 7th January 2014, 18:07   #36
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

I sometimes have a feeling that somebody is trying to kill the 'B.E.S.T'.

By 'Kill' , I mean always announce losses for long years, do not improve service, do not add buses and than one fine day some body hand in glove with a private operator will decide to stop B.E.S.T all together and award the contract for public transport to some private operator.

I know this thought is an overkill, but these thoughts tend to come to your mind when you hear crap things happening in your beloved places.

Regards
Diesel

Last edited by Dieseltuned : 7th January 2014 at 18:35. Reason: spell check
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Old 8th January 2014, 16:28   #37
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

I've always wondered how one manages to drive in the roads of mumbai whenever i am there.. the traffic is a mess during peak hours with autos and taxis competing with innumerable hondas and bmws. Even crossing a road in this chaos is frightening.

The thought that buses ply in these roads makes me pity the drivers. Long working hours with chaotic traffic along with ageing buses which brake down once in a while must really be hard on them. If some one thinks those drivers drive rashly, i recommend taking your car out 10 hours a day in city and adhere to a time table. After about a month, you should be eligible to drive for BEST .

Maintaining their buses properly would atleast ease the pressure on the driver so that he doesnt have to drive a junk in traffic.
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Old 9th January 2014, 22:57   #38
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

Saw this pic in a fb group, this is the new design BEST BUS, looks like an old bus with a modified body. Looks good for sure. Not a big fan of the digital LED indicators as most of the time they never work!

Source
Attached Thumbnails
Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi-newbus.jpg  

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Old 10th January 2014, 13:13   #39
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

It is really sad to see the sad state of affairs of BEST. I used to travel exclusively during my college days in Mumbai during the late 80s and early 90s. The buses were definitely better maintained and it was obviously less crowded in those days.
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Old 13th January 2014, 01:21   #40
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

Well I personally think BEST buses are the best public transport in the country. Just see other states. BEST buses are cleaner and better lit and ventilated. And driving such a big bus inches from other vehicles and pedestrians in chaotic traffic, heat and noise of engine...Hats off to these drivers.
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Old 13th January 2014, 13:49   #41
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

^^ you have not seen the Delhi low floor buses, the Navi Mumbai Volvos, the APSRTC buses, Bangalore Volvos, the Chennai buses, Ahmedabad BRTS, the Kolkatta, Delhi, Bangalore metro, I believe.
BEST is the most corrupt, worst performing public transport service among any major metro, and lets not compare it with more pathetic places like Pune or Nagpur and feel good. BEST used to be India's best transport service until the early 1990s, post which rampant corruption has bled away any good qualities it had.

Consider this: The man running BEST is the father of Ms Kobragade, who is India's notorious diplomat, involved in the illegal Adharsh building scam!!! She claims all her money used to invest in multi crore properties come from her father!! So where has he 'earned' the money from? BEST?
A little digging goes a long way in answering how and why has BEST fallen to current lows.
Only way to salvage BEST is to delink it from the BMC and Maharastra government and make it a private entity, they are sitting on a gold mine of prime land, which can be used to turn the company around.
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Old 13th January 2014, 14:30   #42
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

I wanted to counter vehemently that you can not take away crown of "Worst Public Transport" from Pune!! But, then you said this...
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Consider this: The man running BEST is the father of Ms Kobragade, who is India's notorious diplomat, involved in the illegal Adharsh building scam!!! She claims all her money used to invest in multi crore properties come from her father!! So where has he 'earned' the money from? BEST?
A little digging goes a long way in answering how and why has BEST fallen to current lows.
This is stunning news (at least to me) and makes it quite evident why BEST is in poor shape!
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Old 14th January 2014, 16:01   #43
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

First of all apologies for creating the thread in the wrong section and incorrectly uploading the pics. Thank you moderators for correcting that.

Somehow I have a feeling members felt the article was to bash B.E.S.T. Well thats not the case. I also agree that BEST does a phenomenal job with various routes and connecting most parts of Mumbai.

I also have nostaligic moments with BEST buses especially from home to school, then going to Gateway of India in double decker buses, etc.

Mumbai locals mainly connect north and south Mumbai well; its BEST buses which connects the rest.

When compared with other cities like Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Delhi and Pune Mumbai BEST buses provide the best connectivity and frequency. All I wish is BEST looks at the points highlighted by us to improve their services and be part of one of the best bus services.

Thanking all of you for your responses
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Old 19th January 2014, 18:41   #44
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

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Originally Posted by apachelongbow View Post
Consider this: The man running BEST is the father of Ms Kobragade, who is India's notorious diplomat, involved in the illegal Adharsh building scam!!! She claims all her money used to invest in multi crore properties come from her father!! So where has he 'earned' the money from? BEST?
He is no longer heading the BEST now. He was replaced 2-3 years ago. But yes, he was responsible the most for BEST's downfall in the 2000s. The biggest blow dealt by him was Kinglongs. The buses are bleeding BEST now, with yearly losses of 93 crores as per a recent news report in a local daily.

But still, I do agree that BEST is one of the better municipal transports. But unless something is done urgently, the future is bleak.
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Old 19th January 2014, 23:32   #45
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Default re: Public Bus Torture - In Mumbai & Delhi

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He is no longer heading the BEST now. He was replaced 2-3 years ago. But yes, he was responsible the most for BEST's downfall in the 2000s. The biggest blow dealt by him was Kinglongs. The buses are bleeding BEST now, with yearly losses of 93 crores as per a recent news report in a local daily.

But still, I do agree that BEST is one of the better municipal transports. But unless something is done urgently, the future is bleak.
AkMar
Hi
These were not King Long buses but Ceritas, made in Punjab.
Around 285 of them were bought for rs 285 crores and these buses had more than 700 breakdowns in the first two and half years. When he was asked about them his response was that he did not remember the details, imagine forgetting a 285 crore deal.
Mumbai courier carried some articles on this subject. Nothing happened and we are all paying for it.
Regards
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