Trans­port body goes all out to give com­muters a smooth ride

BET­TER SER­VICE For the first time since NMMT came into ex­is­tence, it plied 293 of its 340 buses

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - Tas­neem Kausar ht­for­nav­i­mum­bai@hin­dus­tan­

The Navi Mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Trans­port’s (NMMT) unique ini­tia­tive, ‘All Out Day’, on Thurs­day got a thumbs up from com­muters. For the first time in the last 20 years since the trans­port body came into ex­is­tence, 293 of its 340 buses ran on the road on the same day.

With the NMMT chair­man be­ing changed reg­u­larly, and the NMMT man­age­ment un­able to take con­crete pol­icy de­ci­sions, there was lit­tle dis­ci­pline in the func­tion­ing of the trans­port body.

“The process to make NMMT more ef­fi­cient has be­gun. Bus day will be or­gan­ised in Jan­uary. The ‘All Out day’ was a dress re­hearsal for the big day,” said Sabu Daniel, NMMT chair­man.

The cash-strapped trans­port body usu­ally runs around 275 buses eveyer day.

When Daniel took over the post ear­lier this year, he planned the ‘bus day’ con­cept to urge com­muters to use to pub­lic trans­port.

It was planned for De­cem­ber, but since the prepa­ra­tions were not com­plete, an ‘All Out day’ was planned on Thurs­day.

Ef­forts had been on for the past 15 days to get max­i­mum num­ber of buses on road. The ef­forts paid off with 293 buses tak­ing to the road.

Though 293 buses ran on the same day, the NMMT still had to do with a to­tal of 47 buses be­ing parked in the de­pot. There were other com­plaints too.

An NMMT em­ployee said, “Leaves of sev­eral per­son­nel had been can­celled and a large num­ber of them re­ported for duty. How­ever, 19 driv­ers and an equal num­ber of con­duc­tors had to sit idle at Turbhe as there were no ve­hi­cles left to ply.”

Though res­i­dents wel­comed the move, they said NMMT should have an­nounced it.

Kailash Shinde, a res­i­dent, said, “There was no public­ity for the pro­gramme. The com­muters had no idea about it.”

If NMMT has to be brought out of its losses, ev­ery day should be all out day.

He added, “If so many buses can run for a day, then they can ob­vi­ously run on all days. This shows the NMMT of­fi­cials and per­son­nel are not work­ing to their full po­ten­tial.”

The NMMT said the ini­tia­tive was a huge suc­cess. “While 293 buses ran on the road for the first time, we will make ef­forts to en­sure such ser­vices are pro­vided reg­u­larly,” said Daniel.

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