The ‘K Line’. . .

Increasing cases of road rage is a cause of concern. In my earlier post ‘Raging Road Rage’ I tried to talk a little about the conditions on the roads, which are getting worse everyday. In that post a lot of aspects were missed out about which we may talk sometime later. But there is one thing which I can’t afford to miss out when I talk about Delhi’s roads and i.e. Delhi’s famous ‘K-Line’. Last year the final tally of those who received ‘moksha’ at the hands of blue line bus drivers was somewhere around 120 and this year also the account has already opened.

All the reckless driving and the accidental deaths drew huge amount of criticism from each and every section of the society. The government has talked a lot about phasing the killer fleet out of the streets of Delhi. The traffic police also once in a blue moon try to put some amount of check on them. But their efforts are futile because they prove to be too few and too late. Moreover with the blue line nexus providing them with huge amount of money to supplement their miniscule salaries in time of high inflation, the cops just lacks the will to put a check on them.

The government claims that their plan to phase out the K-Line will take some 8 months to materialise. But this post is not about how long will it take for the government to make the roads safer or what exactly do they plan to do? But it is about something, about the ‘k line’ which is lost somewhere in all the rush of killings.

Being a DU student I had my share of experience with the ‘k line’. Those who are unfortunate like me and has their college some 20+ kilometres away from their nest must know how painful it is to reach there, especially in the first year. It is the year when ‘door daraz ke rehnewale’ like us don’t get the liberty of going to the college by our own vehicle and as a result we are left at the mercy of the buses. Every morning you reach the bus stop and stand their waiting for the college’s ‘U Special’ or a miss call from a friend to confirm that special is coming [it is like a ritual among the U special commuting students. Those who are on the bus inform the ones who will be boarding it after few stops with a miss call. Generally 2 miss calls stand for bus not coming.] But most of the times, to our dismay [and God knows whose delight?] the bus hardly turns up. In fact catching any DTC which can take you to your college is like a dream come true. So finally you are left with only one option which again and again keeps on coming in front of your eyes after every 5 minutes i.e. the ‘K line’.

Very reluctantly one boards the bus [since one has to pay for the ticket in a blue line, and DTC is almost free for DU students, no one is very happy while boarding them]. But the story does not end here; as a matter of fact this is just the beginning. The overcrowded ‘khadkhadati’ bus with uncomfortable seats, rude conductor trying to shove in more people in and shouting ‘baitho seaten khali hai’ [get in, seats are still empty! With hardly any place to stand, I don’t know as to where the genius plans to sit all the people] is the package which we get with the ticket. One can even tolerate all this as long as one knows that he is heading towards the destination and this will be over soon. But alas what you see? The bus hardly moves for 5 minutes and at almost every stop it is taking a rest of another 5 minutes and fishing for more potential passengers. So the journey just refuses to end. A normal trip which is 1 hour long will easily take somewhere over 90 minutes to finish in the ‘k line’.

I do not understand as to on which all routes these over speeding ‘k lines’ ply, as during my 3 years of ride I never found even one, which had broke the legacy of crawling instead of running. Still people get killed by these, I do not know how?

Yes they are ‘k lines’ and they do kill. They killed me everytime I dared to board them and thought of reaching my college on time [for a change]. They killed me with all the stoppage time they took on every other stop. They killed me with the noise of the engine which refuses to cross the 20 kmph limit [I don’t know how they manage to over speed with it?] and they killed me with the speed, which was overtaken by cycles and rikshaws. But killing because of over speeding is something I still has to witness. Still beware of them, as in both case they are and I think will always be ‘K line’.

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