Srinagar: Commuters visiting Srinagar from northern districts say they were facing lot of problems at the new bus stand at Parimpora.
It is difficult to get a mini bus to their destinations in the city from Parimpora, they said, and the bus stand itself lacks basic facilities for waiting commuters.
Hafsa Basir and Iram Bashir from Handwara are post-graduate students of Kashmir University. Every Monday they travel to Srinagar from Handwara and spend the week at their rental accommodation at Hazratbal.
Hafsa says they have to wait for 30 to 45 minutes to get a mini bus from Parimpora.
“On Mondays we get late for our classes because we don’t get a bus in time,” Hafsa said. “There isn’t enough transport available. The ones waiting on the roadside are always overcrowded. A lot of time is wasted.”
Shahid Farooq, a resident of Safapora, said the shifting of bus stand from Batamaloo to Parimpora was “a blunder”. “Earlier a person used to reach his destination on time as single vehicle used to drop commuters at the nearest spot to city centre,” Shahid said.
“First of all we don’t get a bus (from Parimpora) and if we manage to get a bus it does not move because they are empty during the day time,” Shahid said.
Faizan Firdous, a resident of Parimpora added that even if the buses leave Parimpora they get stuck in traffic jams at Qamarwari.
“In short nothing is going smoothly. Things are getting difficult day by day.”
Apart from the availability of busses commuters also complained of lack of facilities at the bus stand. Several people complained that were drenched during the recent rains and snow while waiting. “The arrangements are not enough. Can one expect 50 seats meeting requirements for 500 people? Our clothes got drenched in rain and snow recently,” Mudassir Ahmad from Baramulla said.
Commuters also complained that that the bus stand lacks washrooms and facilities of drinking water.
“Where shall a person go in such circumstances? There is only one tap available for drinking water in the bus stand and that too is far away from the main site,” Mushtaq Ahmad, a commuter said.
Women and girls are the worst victims in overcrowded transport. Many complained that reserved seats in the buses are always occupied by men.
“There should be separate bus service for women from this bus stand as we don’t feel comfortable in overcrowded buses,” Nusrat Hamid, a banker said.