Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A ride in "Namma Metro"

The ride in "Namma Metro" was anti-climactic. It may be due to either the non-rush hour or the distance between two subsequent stations. But one thing is for sure. I am spoiled by the Parisian metro. Paris is a small city and there is a metro stop every few meters away.

"Namma Metro" in Bengaluru has gigantic stations and MG Road to Baiyappamahalli link runs mostly above the ground. The train stations are well designed, sometimes making you wonder if size is really necessary. Who is the actual customer here? The tourists or the commuters? The stations are very clean. So are the interiors of the train.

Since the train ride is above the ground, you get a view of the city. Unfortunately, the landscape is depressing with views of semi-demolished buildings and the impoverished areas of the city. Despite these, Namma metro seems to be a local delight. There were a few fellow riders like me who were there only for the joy of being in the train. They were also busy taking pictures using their mobiles.

The metro service is still in the teething phase. This is evident from two factors. The first is the signboard saying "No return tickets available". If there is no return ticket, is there an option for a day pass or a weekend pass? Is this again a distant dream? The second is the presence of people assisting people through the automatic gates. This also shows the low confidence on the intelligence of the travelers to figure the whole thing out.

There is always something about life that brings a smile on my face even when I am complaining. Yes, there were two during my "Namma metro" adventure - one before the ride and another after the ride. A metro staff requested not to spit chewing gum on the metro station in the most polite manner possible. This was while I entered the MG Road metro station. When I took pictures of the parked train, one guard requested me with a smile not to take pictures while his friend was trying to shoo me away.

The final act also is the basis of today's dilemma. Is photography forbidden inside the metro? I saw a signboard requesting everyone to kindly avoid taking photographs. The keywords were "please" and "avoid". Please and avoid are not the same as forbidden. I do not want to discuss intricacies of language with the metro staff. Instead I would like to argue on the technicality when time comes.



10 comments:

  1. Strange. Why do they want to restrict photography? Security reasons or to protect people's privacy?

    In Trivandrum new Airport there is a sign "Photography Welcome".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. IMO, that is the way it should be. When we photograph, it means free publicity. I think the restriction is due to security reasons. Not sure about the privacy angle.

      Delete
  2. The Metro is always crowded with jolly riders, especially in the evenings, with family and friends, for at present it really doesn't seem to be of much use to the people in the real sense, the distance is also too short. Only when the whole city is connected, it might turn out to be worthwhile, for that to happen I think it would take ages, maybe the younger generation may benefit from it.
    We felt the platform has not been built to take a big crowd of people, if and when they may eventually want to use the facility in the real sense.
    So you are back in India, for how long?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You think the distance is short and I think the distance is long. :) Like I said, my recent experience is Paris.

      This project took a whole lot of years to complete. When will the city be fully connected? Your guess is as good as mine.

      I am back for a short vacation. Returning next week.

      Delete
  3. So looking forward to taking a ride in one of the metros in India..must be cutting through traffic fast though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cutting through traffic. That is the biggest advantage. :)

      Delete
  4. At tourist spots in India, one has to pay to take the camera in. Isn't that ridiculous?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is ridiculous. Why charge extra for camera? I never understood the rationale behind it!

      Delete
  5. Lovely post.

    It's true that India sometimes has a funny 'camera policy' but I hope it changes soon looking at the number of budding photographers clicking everywhere.

    You should try the park next to Hebbal flyover. From 5.30 AM, you'll see a lot of photographers out there on the weekend. Went there once and found some interesting subjects to take photos of.

    Cheers,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will try it when I am in Bengaluru next time. In India, I am very cautious while shooting. I like to take pictures of people. The candid shots are very tricky in India because it is overcrowded everywhere and I am also not sure of the reaction of the fellow citizens.

      Delete

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 India License.