Is change something that we always tend to resist at the first go? Sometimes, I think we do. I still remember the resistance that existed when discussions began about having a Metro rail network in Bangalore. There was resistance of all kinds. Initially, I remember that there were 2 factions among the political junta – one that supported the Metro and the other that vouched by the Mono Rail. Finally, it was decided that Bangalore will have its Metro! Yes, Namma Metro! Citizens then began to express their opinion. But now, when the first leg of Namma Metro is up and running, the people are nothing but happy and excited!
I know that when I speak of the junta, I also belong there. I too was unhappy initially for multiple reasons – the boulevard was going (it was just impossible to imagine MG without the bougainvillea boulevard), there would be traffic congestion, it would surely go beyond the estimated time, so on and so forth. Traders on CMH Road tried their best to divert the route. However, the BMRCL team went ahead as per their plan and today the city I’m sure is happy.
Inaugurated on the 20th of October, the Metro saw people from all corners of the city visit the stations to take a joy ride. I guess the MG Road station and the Baiyappanahalli stations saw the most foot falls. Well done stations, effective signages, courteous staff and yes, the Majestic Metro did it for me. Fell in love with the system. I saw how happy people from various strata were. At this point, I guess Metro is mostly being used by curious visitors rather than daily commuters. But yes, the response is surely positive.
People wait as close to the yellow line as they can to see the Metro enter the platform. Pictures are being clicked as it enters. Once they enter in, they are mesmerized by the entire system. Again, pictures are being clicked! Yes, for a lot of them the escalators in the stations are a big thing! People who would have never used it earlier are now being given a chance to do so. Thanks to Namma Metro. I choose not to comment on whether the Metro is international in standards or not. I would like to focus on how it’s being received and how it’s spreading joy among the people! Yes, I love the Metro for the smiles it’s bringing on people’s faces!
So far, the Metro gets a 5 star rating!! What I am keen about is to see how it is maintained as the key here lies in sustaining the same. They are doing their best. The minute the train terminates at the last point, a maintenance staff is seen cleaning the train. The hubs, however, need more people to do so. Since we enjoy littering around, spitting and sleeping at any place, the staff needs to be better prepared to tackle us, the thick skinned natives!
All said and done, I am a very happy Bangalorean at this point and I endorse the Namma Metro tag at this point with pride! Do take a trip! You will love it!