RAWALPINDI: Physically retarded people from adjoining areas of twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi have urged the authorities concerned to provide them with special facilities in the metro bus service (MBS).
According to reports, more than 100 disable persons with diverse physique incapacities use to commute on the metro bus daily. These marginalised people have been struggling to get reserved seats in the bus, as common passengers habitually capture reserved seats.
Speaking to Daily Times, people with disability said that the (MBS) metro bus has two each seats in men and women portions for special people. These distinguished seats are painted with carroty colure, besides the caution has also been given, but it often goes unnoticed by common commuters causing inconvenience amongst person with disabilities.
While speaking to Daily Times, Qasim Alee, a government employee, who uses to travel frequently on the metro bus, said that persons with disabilities were being deprived of reserved seats.
Perturbed at the travel woes, Qasim said it was one of the happiest day of his life when (MBS) metro was inaugurated and the administration reserved seats for person with disabilities. He was overjoyed that his travel woes would end following MBS inauguration. But his travel sufferings were not yet over, he remarked.
Being a government employee, he used to travel daily in the metro bus, but every now and then he finds that common commuters occupy the reserved seats. In these circumstances, he often sought security staff’s help to take seat, but he cannot repeat this exercise consistently in jam-packed metro, he regretted.
Shabir Hussain, another physical handicapped, who works for NADRA as computer operator, said that “metro bus is no more friendly for special ones as they were being treated imperfectly”.
Though the authority had reserved seats for person with disabilities, however, special people in metro are struggling to avail this facility owing to non-cooperation of common people. “The authorities concerned should assign respective bus driver to accommodate special people”, he suggested.
“Beside this footstep, the MBS authority should also introduce friendly metro economical travelling card with 50 percent fare for special ones,” he demanded.
When contacted, Faizabad Station Manager Nasir Mahmood said that the metro security staffs try its level best to accommodate these peoples if someone approaches them.
He appealed to normal travellers to take care of person with disabilities while traveling and earn blessing as well. When he asked about is there any proposal under consideration to give relief for special people, he refused to comment on the administrative subject, saying the MBS authority would seriously consider such proposal. Despite repeated attempts, Metro Bus Authority Chairman Haneef Abbasi could not be contacted to comments on the said issue.
By: Mahtab Abbasi