A scene at Koyembedu Omni Bus Stand

It was a perfect experience I thrive to have and I really enjoyed the time. Yesterday I had to book tickets to Madurai in an infamous Omni (Private) bus because all reputed travels like KPN, Parveen, ABT etc were all running full houses because of long weekend holidays. I’ve had lot os bad experience with such operators and I was expecting some problem. So this is how it all started;

  • Booked a ticket in a Travels names Sri Saravana Travels through RedBus.in by 8 PM.
  • Bus was scheduled to start by 11 o clock.
  • Cost of the ticket was Rs.780.
  • Had to search for the small office for 30 min and many other bus operators were not aware of this Travels.
  • Upon finding the office by 10.45 PM we were all made to sit on the small dungeon office till 12 o clock.
  • Then people started questioning and we were pacified by telling bus will reach in 15 min and we were made to sit in a near by Travels office in A/C.
  • Then after another 45 min we were all made to stand out telling bus has come.
  • But after standing on the platform for 15 min people started getting irritated (including me).
  • I was the first to go with a rude voice.
  • The owner (We didn’t know then that he was the owner) of the Travels said he is doing us a favor and if we shout he cant help us out. It was almost a blackmail and I was not happy with the way we were treated.
  • When I asked for the name of the owner he said owner is abroad and when I asked for his name he said it is Noor Mohammed. That took my temper to the top because it looked he was teasing us. How can a Sri Saravana Travels owner can be named with a muslim name??
  • Then I called him to the Police station and immediately he started abusing me with all bad words.
  • Then I pulled him to Police station and there was almost a Physical fight between me and the Travels guy.
  • Immediately all the co-passengers came to my rescue and we started pulling him to Police Station.
  • Then all the Travels guys mostly drunk assembled and started pushing other passengers.
  • Immediately I call 100 and asked for the help of COPS.
  • After a heated debate and after 10 min cops reached the spot & they picked all the travels folks.
  • Out of 20 passengers only 4 accompanied me. But I was not bothered and I was ready to fight it alone.
  • As we thought we were made to slog and these travels people were given a good treatment. Which was obvious.
  • When I was writing a complaint a cop asked me not to do it and when I was adamant to give a compliant he started threatening that I’ve to come to station when ever they call until the case ends. By then we thought there is no use in going to cops and came to know their intentions.
  • In spite of cops interfering we got a bus which was not worth for Rs.780/- by 3 AM in the morning.
  • Another thing was the operator was threatening me in front of the cops that he has my address and he will be back with revenge. Though I gave a dawn I was startled because cops were listening to his threats.

Finally after boarding the bus everyone came and thanked me for making this happen. Finally I was contented because;

  • of me others were able to get a bus and travel to Madurai.
  • For sure cops would have taken advantage of the situation and would have taken some bribe.
  • I thought them a lesson that they can’t take everyone for granted.

Again there is not going to be any change. But I did my bit to change things by taking some initiative and by writing this blog which will be of help to others.

Note: Finally we came to know Sri Saravana Travels is just a ticket booking agent and he doesn’t own a bus. They are ticket agents with a Name to cheat people.

Private Bus Drama

Normally I never travel in small time private bus operators. All my previous experience has been bad. So these are the things that happened in the past; 

  • In 2001 I boarded a bus called Sangeetha Travels by 10.30 to Chennai. Since I was tired I slept and woke up by 1 o clock only to fine the bus was still in the same spot I boarded. They were still filling the empty seats. Then reached by 10 AM.
  • Second is also with the same operator & same year who dropped us in chitoor claiming they don’t have a permit to enter Tamil Nadu and left us in a normal bus. Again reached Chennai by 10 AM
  • Then 6 months I boarded a bus to Madurai. This time operator name National Travels. I was told bus starts by 10 o clock and again when we crossed Chennai it was 2 o clocks. Until then they were filling the seats. Then they reached Trichy where most of them got down and again they halted for an hour to fill the empty seats. Then reached by 1 PM.

After these entire nightmares I stopped travelling using smalltime players. Yesterday I badly wanted to travel to Bangalore as today is the last day to pay Professional Tax. I must have booked tickets as I know I must travel to Bangalore. But that is me I love vagabond travel.

Again yesterday I was called by Sangitha Travels. The cost of the ticket was Rs.850/- which was double than what I normally pay. Then I was told I need to board 11.30 PM bus. Then couple of people was asked to board 11 o clock bus and when I asked it that was my bus they said mine was 11.30 bus. A Gurka employee of the travels said 11 o clock bus was last and by now I smelled again I’m into some trouble.

Not this is how the drama started; 

  • All of a sudden asked for my boarding pass.
  • He returned asked me to take my bag, run and follow him.
  • He returned shouting at his other agents to call and stop the bus.
  • Then he gave the boarding pass to Gurka and asked him to stop the bus and make me board the bus.
  • He took me to some other agent.
  • He shouted at me asking what time to come.
  • It irked me I started giving back telling I was waiting inside his office for more than an hour. In fact this guy saw me sitting inside his office for long, but he pretended as if he doesn’t know me.
  • Then he asked for another 100 bucks claiming he needed that to help me board another bus.
  • By now I started shouting at him in local Chennai lingo and I said I can create a scene.
  • Then he changed the topic telling I owe them Rs.100 bucks. Then I said if he is going to mess around with me he is into trouble. My ease speaking Chennai lingo helped.
  • Then he said he is doing me a favor. He said without my knowledge he has sent someone in my bus and he took his boarding pass to me.
  • He gave me the front seat where ask I was given the last seat in my ticket.
  • I was adamant not to pay these people even a penny.
  • Then I got into my seat and got settled.
  • Then when I peeped out there were old people, young couples with kids who were put into trouble.

I was in no mood in give a helping hand to them and I was watching all the quarrels. Finally they started the bus by 12:15PM and reached Bangalore by 5:15 PM.