Regular commuters on the Sion-Panvel Highway have by now been acquainted with the deplorable condition of the road.To add to their woes, the stretch doesn’t even have properly constructed bus stops for those taking public transport to get to their destination.
MiD DAY visited 14 bus stops on the highway starting from Juinagar to Kharghar. Lack of permanent structures or even a roof makes it difficult for commuters to stand, especially during the day.
A woman commuter who wished to remain anonymous said, “Officials claim that they have not set up bus stops as the construction work on the highway is still on. Irrespective of that the authorities should keep in mind that commuters are facing a lot of problems, and hence, some kind of action must be taken to ensure easy travel for us.”
The bus stops are mere poles erected to support boards that list the bus route numbers for the vehicles halting at that stop. During monsoon, the situation worsens as lack of a shed or temporary roof makes if difficult for commuters to wait during pouring rains. Another issue is the growing number of potholes on the road that forces buses to stop far away from the stop creating confusion for commuters.
G C Mangle, general manager of NMMT, said, “We have conducted a study of the commuters, and according to our survey there have been no such complaints. Once we find complaints or any problems faced by commuters we will notify the contractors and those in charge of maintenance, and the necessary changes would be undertaken.”
The bus stop at Juinagar, on the stretch towards Panvel, was nothing but a pole with a board indicating bus numbers. There was also no place for sitting down anywhere near the spot. There were large potholes near this pole, forcing buses to halt some distance away from the stop.
The potholes in front of the bus stop at Kharghar were filled up just a week or two ago. Earlier, the road was very bad. Boarding and alighting from the bus was also very difficult. Something should be done. At least temporary seating and sheds should be made available during the monsoon. -- Karan Chakravarty, resident of Nerul
This bus stop is located after the junction at Nerul, towards Sanpada. There was no shed at the bus stop. A commuter said that earlier there had been a stop with a shed and seating, which was later removed for unknown reasons.
Many times buses do not stop at the bus stop. When you ask the driver for the reason he claims that the bad roads do not allow for getting the vehicle close to the stop. Many stops on this route do not even have seating or sheds. The government should make arrangements. It’s not like we travel for free. -- Nitesh Vani, resident of Nerul
This bus stop is near Kharghar Flyover, towards Belapur. It lacks benches as well as a permanent structure.
Almost all the bus stops on this route do not have any seating or any form of solid structure overhead to protect travellers from rain or sun. It gets difficult for commuters who have to wait a long time for their bus to arrive. -- Ashish G, resident of Kharghar
Here’s what we saw at some of the worst-maintained stops on the Sion-Panvel Highway