Residents throng Metro Bus terminals
All stations of the Metro Bus Service remained jam-packed with commuters, especially in Rawalpindi, and dozens of them remained standing in long queues to get tickets on Friday and Saturday.
Most commuters lauded the bus service, however, they were of the view that the Metro Bus Authority (MBA) should prolong the closing time of the operation till 12 o’clock instead of the current closing time of 10 p.m.
A large number of commuters, including children and women, went to the stations to get on the buses. The authorities had to deploy police to control the crowds, which were sometimes difficult to handle while keeping them in order in queues.
Many citizens paid a visit to the stations as though they were on some sort of picnic and many were seen making videos at the stations on their cellular phones to make the occasion memorable.
Ghazala, a commuter, who visited a Metro Station to get tickets for Islamabad along with her two kids, said that the prolonged construction period of the Metro was a testing time for the residents and now they were truly entitled to enjoy the bus service.
“I was not expecting such a large crowd at the station. I had presumed before reaching the station that I would
climb the stairs and get the ticket comfortably at Liaquat Bagh. However, it was not the case as far as getting the ticket for the bus was concerned. I had to wait for a long time in a queue to get a ticket. But in any case, me and my family enjoyed the visit to the station,” she summed up her observation.
Another commuter, Abdullah, who generally gets free from his office in Islamabad late in the evening, paid a visit to a bus station in Islamabad at 11 p.m. on the launching day of the Metro Bus Service on June 4. However, the administration at the terminal informed him that he was too late and the buses were not available at that hour of the night.
He told this scribe that he pointed out to the responsible representatives of the station that the buses were plying on the route. However, he was informed that these buses were plying on the route as part of trial and they were not meant for commuters.
Ahmed, a resident of Sadiqabad, said that people faced difficulties on account of construction of the project. According to him, now is the time to get full benefit of it and its scheduled time should be enhanced two hours to 12 o’clock for the convenience of the commuters. He said many vans, which earlier plied on this route, changed their routes before the launching of the Metro Bus Service. He said that only a few vans still ply on the route but they are not available during late hours of the day and the ones who do not have a car or a motorcycle would have to hire expensive taxis from Islamabad to get to Rawalpindi at late hours. He requested the authorities to take this point into consideration and run the Metro Bus Service till 12 o’clock at night.
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