Mysuru: It is not often that a government-run entity responds to consumer complaints responsibly. However, Mysuru’s urban transport division of Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation’s (KSRTC) recent ‘commuter-friendly’ response deviated from this norm, according to the Mysore GrahakaraParishat (MGP).
The KSRTC answered 25 questions by the MGP. The questions were classified under short-term, long-term and if the KSRTC had to work with the police and Mysuru City Corporation (MCC).
Prof. S. Sobana and Prof. B.S. Shankara, of the MGP, observed that some of the answers could have been more action-oriented rather than a transferring of blame onto other departments. For instance, the responses to why many ITS boards were not working, why they were not provided in rural areas and why there were no buses in some areas, were that either the KSRTC would work with the CESC and MCC to ensure results or that there simply was no demand for the same. The questions merited more detailed responses with regard to what had been done and what problems were encountered along the way, they held.
The MGP had listed many complaints over the behaviour of conductors and drivers towards passengers. These included talking rudely, demanding exact change, not stopping at designated stops, talking on mobile phones while driving, not giving priority to women and senior citizens while getting into or off, not having bus numbers or designations visibly displayed, and poor maintenance of buses, a release from the Parishat stated.
The KSRTC management assured the MGP that efforts would be made to serve passengers better. Continuous and regular training to KSRTC staff, awards for good conduct, and penalties for misconduct would be implemented.
The KSRTC is planning to introduce smart cards to reduce the problem of change. The corporation cannot afford to give discounts to senior citizens in A/C buses because of high cost of operations. It is working on bringing some changes from bus-stand centric to a more radial system. This will not only reduce traffic congestion but also improve commuting.
Though KSRTC has a website for lodging complaints, the MGP held that it should develop a far better system to handle the complaints.