What I saw in Gujarat

Ahmedabad_BRTSLast year I got a chance to attend a conference in Ahmedabad. Me, and couple of my office colleagues were attending the conference. We were put up in hotel Marriott. Of course the stay is Marriott was excellent and memorable. However in this blog post I am not going to advertise about the Marriott. I will tell you what I saw and experienced in city of Ahmedabad.

I was travelling from Bangalore, so it was a almost a shocker for me. During the peak hour traffic also, it was very rare to find any traffic jams. I just looked around and I noticed something unique.

There was a separate lane for city buses. All the city buses were commuting only in that specified lane. The rest of the traffic was moving outside those lanes. Due to this, the city buses were commuting very fast; and there was not much traffic on the normal roads for private vehicles like cars, auto rickshaws, bikes etc.

Not just that – the ticketing system of the public transport buses was also unique. Electronic tickets with smart cards were being issued for travelling in the bus.

The only other place in India where I saw smart card based tickets was in Delhi Metro and Bangalore Metro.

The only other city where I saw smart card based tickets for buses was in Singapore.

I was awed. Just to re-confirm what I witnessed, I started a conversation with the taxi driver and asked him if this is how the public transport in in the rest of the city. He said – “Yes, most of the city it is like this. Where ever it was feasible to do so, the government has done this.”

Check out this video which is about success story of BRTS (Bus Rapid Transition System) ..

PS : I am linking this video not to praise BJP .. but as a proof that it really exists…

Leave aside the Good governance and all the political message in the video .. Just check out how simple ideas can make life better…

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