As most of the State Board run schools begin their new academic session from June 26, 2014, one can see the school students, in new crisp uniforms, new shoes, new school bags and the entire works. Most of them are very enthusiastic and excited to begin their new academic session. New and higher class rooms beckon them. New class teachers, new seats and a change from their old class-rooms are really exciting.
However, the plight that the students face today is the burden of all the books, notebooks, registers, pencil box, tiffin box, water-bottle, rain-coat etc which they carry in a shoulder bag practically makes them tired by the time they come back home from the school.
One more hazard and discomfort that these small children face everyday is the experience of being cramped or stuffed into the mini-school busses, autos etc in which they are transported to and fro the school.
The RTO has undertaken drives umpteen times to curtail the number of school children that can be plied on their vehicles, yet they some-how continue to do that. One more hazard that these students plying by autos is that these young drivers drive their autos so fast, take risks of crossing red-signals, over-take bigger vehicles etc. Nagpur citizens have witnessed many fatal accidents in the past. However, we don’t seem to learn.
They chose not to come on some days, when the parents are forced to drop and pick their wards even after paying a huge amount of uninterrupted pick-up and drop service.
Many schools have their own school buses. They have made it mandatory for the parents to send the children on these buses only. However, the cost that they have to incur is way too high, that school autos are preferable any-day.
These bus drivers too, make many error of judgment putting the lives of the little ones in danger. The start the buses before the child alights from the bus, crosses the road etc. They don’t check before reversing, etc.
They park their autos or buses as and where it please them. These auto or mini-school buses’ drivers often escape serious penal action whenever an accident occurs. They do not have any fixed stops. Without showing proper signal that they are going to stop their vehicle, they just sidle to the shoulder of the road and as soon as the child alights, they take off without verifying who is coming from the rear.
The drivers are known to use abusive language before these little kids causing bad influence on them and a psyche that they can use abusive language whenever someone irks them.
Many drivers are also known to smoke cigarettes, bidis in the cabin of their buses or autos. They also attend to their Cell phones when their vehicles are in motion causing grave risk to their passengers.
Nagpur Today spoke to a few parents to know what they feel about this rampant misconduct and rash behaviour of these errant drivers of school autos or mini-buses.
Prashant Karemore whose little kid Ashlesha is going to 1st standard in a convent in the city said that the school buses charge way too much leaving Auto as the only alternative available to them. All that they do is to pray for their safe travel and request the driver to be careful with their ward.
Padam Thapa whose kid Nitin is going to the VIIth said that both of them are working and do not have time to go everyday to drop and pick their kid up. They have no other alternative but to rely of these service providers. However, Padam was of the opinion that any person may meet any eventuality anywhere. One cannot blame them alone for rash driving and errant behavior. Almost everyone in the city drives like that leaving a few law abiding citizens.
Pankaj Sonkusre whose kid Yatharth who is going to 1st standard opined that he had personally talked to the driver and has asked him to be extra careful with the kids He said that we are entrusting our child to these drivers, they in turn should consider these kids their own and take them safely to and fro the school.
Tarun Mehra whose little kid is going by auto said that he has practically threatened the driver that if anything happens to his kid, he will certainly ensure that he is jailed for life. This threat has some-how worked wonders and his daughter never had any trouble so far.
Amit Gandhare whose daughter Ananya, studies in a school far away from his house has a different problem. He and his wife are both in service and thus no time to drop and pick their daughter from school. Both solely rely on private transport. But safety of their daughter is always in their minds. Amit says that he can only pray for Ananya’s safety whenever she travels in school bus or auto.
Pic By : Vinay Thorat