So yesterday, I decide to hop on one of those 10 kmph BEST A/C buses to my work (The procurement guys in BEST deserve a Nobel for these 10kmph buses. These buses allow you correctly calculate the time you will spend on the road irrespective of the traffic conditions...that is because they go at 10kmph. Nobel my dear reader...nothing less).
I go check the schedule, speak to the good man at the depot and there are 7 mins for the next bus.
I decide to wait. There is a bus in the depot and it starts at the time, makes 2 rounds within the depot and goes back to parking. I wait. This is 10 mins. past the scheduled time, I go and inquire again and they say in few minutes. Well it turns out, they had cancelled the bus. The next bus was 30mins. later. And they cared damn about the passengers.
Arguing with BEST is useless at best and hopeless at worst. BEST prides itself to be the best public bus transport company in India.But you know the fact is exactly that and only that much. It is and can be the best one only in India. Step out to leaders in public transport like Singapore or London and BEST will rank where India ranks in most other scales. And this incident summarizes the story of Mumbai today.
A proverb in Marathi says, "Vaasrat langdi gaay shahaani." Loosely translated, "A limping cow is a leader amongst the calves". That is what Mumbai is and Maharashtra is. It is only basking in the glory of its past. I think the past created in last 2 centuries.
We all know about the able and adarsh leadership we have today. If you feel I am too harsh, then here is a challenge - Keep them as ideal and give their example to your children for next 5 years. If you cannot, accept I am right. Really, is there any leader worth his or her salt in this so called great state. And is there any future? Am I pessimistic, oh yes I am!
See the roads, the urban infrastructure, the vision (or blindness) of current administrators (no they are not leaders), problems plaguing the state like power, water, employment, crime, land scams....have we even moved from the 70s? And look at other states. With its leadership position, Maharashtra should have been the perpetual outlier in the game, dictating terms to rest of the country....instead what we are is a sorry bunch of guys. Maharashtra and Mumbai are limping cows amongst other calves. Wait till one of them grows up.
Warning - This blog is a rant. But I think this opinion is shared by many....millions.