When the Multi-Modal Transit System (MMTS) was launched way back in 2003 with 48 services, it was seen as an answer to the rising public transport needs of the capital. Ten years hence, with many new residential and commercial locations mushrooming on the train routes, passenger footfall has seen a rise from the 25,000 a day mark in 2003 to over 1.5 lakh in 2013. However, the MMTS’ development seems to have lost it way, with it being low on priority with the South Central Railway (SCR).
Right from lack of dedicated lines, failure to augment existing services, delay in taking up Phase-II, poor punctuality and absence of feeder bus services to many stations, MMTS is plagued by a variety of issues.
Revenues have increased from Rs. 70,000 in 2003 to Rs. 4.70 lakh per day in 2013, and yet the SCR could add just 80 new services. Presently, as many as 121 services are conducted a day on three routes including Falaknuma-Lingampally, Lingampally- Nampally and Nampally- Secunderabad.
Being an affordable mode of transport, many commuters prefer MMTS to buses, but most end up arriving late at their respective destinations. “Take any route, one thing stands out, and that is poor punctuality, and we have to think twice before boarding the train,” complains Balakishore, a commuter.
Also, commuters charge poor monitoring and lack of dedicated lines for frequency problems. For a system, which has over 121 services and 1.50 lakh passengers’ patronage everyday, there is no special officer or team to monitor its functioning.
When MMTS was introduced, the SCR had many plans, including feeder bus services, cafeterias, ATMs, book stores and other amenities at stations and even a GPRS-enabled service. But, most of them are yet to fructify or have not yielded the expected results like the feeder services.
Combined pass ticket
Though the SCR and the APSRTC launched the combined pass ticket in 2007, they have been at loggerheads over ticket prices. The Railways put the common pass ticket at Rs. 450, with the RTC’s share being Rs. 290. But, this entailed a loss of Rs. 50 to the RTC, as its general bus pass used to cost Rs. 340 then. Though 80 services were operated initially, most were gradually withdrawn owing to poor occupancy.
Presently, the combined pass ticket costs Rs. 700 per month, but with lack of feeder connectivity to Borabanda, Sanjeevaiah Park, Necklace Road, Hafeezpet, Chandanagar, Hitech city and Lingampally stations, hardly 3,000 tickets are sold a month.
From lack of dedicated lines, failure to augment existing services, delay in taking up Phase-II, poor punctuality and absence of feeder bus services to many stations, MMTS is plagued by a variety of issues