What’s Stopping Our Citizens From Car Pooling?

#Agenda Car Pooling
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With no respite from the growing menace of air pollution and traffic choked roads, Pune’s citizens are up in arms seeking solutions from the authorities…

“Improvement in public transport is the only solution to solve this increasing menace,” quoted Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic), Tejaswi Satpute recently in a recent interview to Pune365.

True, But, Isn’t it time that our citizens also contribute with viable alternatives to ease the problems?

These are some of the pertinent questions raised by Pune activist and active citizens when we spoke to them for this edition of #Pune365Agenda on the growing commuter concerns and air quality levels.

“Carpooling is definitely one of the most effective and immediate solutions to the increased number of vehicles on the roads,” quotes Madhav Chordia, an entrepreneur and social activist.

“Given the increase in the fuel prices, rise in air pollution, increase in the vehicle-driver ratio, diminishing parking spaces, it is the need of an hour.

For a start, citizens must acknowledge the fact that these problems are omnipresent and can only be tackled with effective contribution from the society.

“Come the monsoons and people can be seen taking their vehicles out in the rain, yet, they will not think of coordinating and car pooling. People even think it is a status symbol to own several vehicles, but it may be pointless since you can barely drive in this chaotic traffic snarls everyday.

“I fail to understand why people only blame the authorities for a faulty infrastructure and services and stay oblivious to the fact that infrastructure cannot be expanded beyond a limit.

“It is we who need to expand our horizons and start thinking about the environmental impact,” Chordia quips.

Suresh Madhav Shinde says that car-pooling consumes a lot of time. I have tried taking the ‘share a cab’ available by many taxi aggregators but the point is, if you are the last person to be dropped, you tend to miss all your meeting thanks to delays.

“I once booked a cab from Kothrud to Vimanangar and it took me near almost two and a half hours to reach my destination near the airport.

Although it was cost effective, I do not think it is practical unless you travel with people going to the same destination, or long distance rather than within the city.” Shinde adds.

“We have been provided with a pickup option by the company I work for, but, it often happens that the pickup time is too early and I have to adjust my entire days schedule on to manage the long time I spend in the cab that has to pick up others enroute.

Hence, often I prefer taking my bike,” says a senior account manager at a city based IT company. “It is quick and saves time too.

I do not get stuck in traffic jams for hours and can reach at the same time when the cab does. Although it is far from cost effective, it allows me to catch up on my sleep and I get home earlier too” he adds.

“People think that cab sharing is cost effective, but once you try it with these cab services, you will figure that it is not.

“The cost of a shared cab is often the same or even more than hiring an individual one for some weird reason. Then, one may as well book one for yourself and have a comfortable ride and reach your destination on time,” says Priyanshi, a social media executive.

“We do not get a pickup and drop facility from work and you cannot trust the public transport system, and I do not own a bike as of now. What is the solution here?

“Stand on the roads and ask for lifts from strangers? Car pool is an option but not really practical and convenient,” Priyanshi adds.


Loveleen Kaur

Loveleen Kaur

She loves travelling, dogs, sarcasm, humour and anything that spells F O O D, in that order. A writer on a journey to make positive stories a morning ritual and give society what it needs the most - optimism !!

Reach her at loveleen@pune365.com or tweet @KaurKaur18
Loveleen Kaur