Monday, July 17, 2006

My experiments with Indian Railways

~ This is a mail I have sent to a couple of my friends, few months back. I was going through my archives and found it. It is after getting tired of my such mails that some of my friends suggested me to start a blog. Who cared? So finally, Rose herself started one for me and pasted one of my never ending mails as the first post. ~

Some people have something in their face that we never forget them, even if the meeting last only for 10 minutes. I met such a guy this morning.

I was getting out of the station and walking as if I am participating in Olympics. It was already 10.15 and I badly wanted to change the tag of a late comer. With 15 minutes I would have barely managed to make it on time at 10.30.

That's when this guy came in front of me. All white attire, clean and thoroughly pressed. Can't actually tell he is handsome, short and fair, middle aged with curly hair. I was too busy to notice him. But he didn't want to let me go. He pushed his way through the crowd and stood in front of me. "Tickets, please".

I put my hands inside the bag and kept on searching for a season ticket that I didn't have for the last one week. After doing that for 5 minutes he humbly told me to sit on the bench there and search patiently. Smart chap,I guess I am not the first crooked traveler he is dealing with.

You can't actually blame me. I never had any intentions to fool the IndianRailway. Its just that by the time I get to the station the queue at the ticket counter is formidable enough that I am left with no option but to put off the ticket buying for the next day. Everyday, exactly at that time I make a resolution to get up early next day and make the pass. As thesaying goes, tomorrow never comes.

After around 10 minutes, I had exhausted all my acting skills. I didn'teven had to tell anything. He said "260 rupees". The tickets would have costed me 9 rupees and 15 minutes. That means I would have bought exactly 28.88 tickets with that. All the passers by, without the exception of one,was giving me "that look". I hope now you understand why I really didn'twant to bribe him and settle the matter with 100 bucks.

Good and efficient guy. Lallu Prasad has a good team at Indian Railways.

26 Comments:

Blogger Malika said...

I agree... but Indian railways could make it easier for commuters by introducing lots of automatic vending machines, so that you don't have to stand in the long lines and waste time.

1:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

stumbled upon your blog rather accidentally....was googling to find the English of chambakka...wanted to tell my American colleague what fruit I had last night...though the trip to your blog was not fruitful in that sense, happy to see a blog with a smattering of malayalam in it...spent the first 22 years of my life in Alwaye (or Aluva as it is called now)...and in those times I used to be a frequent flier between Aluva & Thrissur..though I don't remember any stopovers at Kodakara, have gone thru the place hundreds of times..so, can relate to your blog easily...

Right now, I am so busy in office, I sat and read all your posts so far:-)

2:16 AM  
Blogger mathew said...

Lol!!!..So u have damsels doing that "hey-it -seems-I-lost-the-ticket" expression!!..I thought, it was only we fellas did that trick!!

Its not always that we bribe the Ticket checker's..Infact they cajole us into bribing them!!
So it is they who are at fault!!!

(Innocently cowering behind!! ;) )

3:10 AM  
Blogger Rose said...

~laughs~

I guess we cud write a book on the experiences at Mumbai Local railways.. Rem when u actually had a pass and the guy started created a huge issue coz ur photo was not stuck.. The time when i left my purse at home (of crs with my pass in it) and had to beg a colleague to pay for the fine so that we cud be released..

Sigh... Dewy.. Did u ever think that our lives wud revolve arnd railway passes and 'Chuk Chuk gaadi's??

:D

..Me

4:19 AM  
Blogger Srijith Unni said...

At times.. we all goof up..

But as of now, since the joke is on you..:)

Haa haa.. ha!

With Regards,
Srijith Unni.

5:35 AM  
Blogger Inder said...

a friend got into tram with his wife and kid. the kid was in a cart. so they carried the cart and kid to the place for baby-carts in the tram. by then the tram had moved 100 meters or so. the ticket checker asked them for tickets. friend had the tram-trips. he hadn't punch them as he was busy moving around with the kid. the checker didn't listen to his arguments. friend had his wife were fined 40 euros each. the checker said that it was his duty to fine people without tickets and said that people who think that they have a valid reason can contact the concerned authorities to explain the situation and get the fine-amount back.

6:21 AM  
Blogger CyberRowdy(Q8TechDrive) said...

DOOODROPS! :- DONT DO THIS AGAIN...WE DONT WANT YOU TO BLOG FROM JAIL...LOL

YEAH....I UNDERSTAND HOW HORRIBLE IT WOULD BE TO GET "THAT" LOOK FROM THE PEOPLE...ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU ARE A GIRL..SORRY...LADY..(LOL)

9:46 AM  
Blogger Jeseem said...

so did u buy the season ticket now or still trying/planing to :-)

9:53 AM  
Blogger Chaos said...

Hey.. blogspot domain being blocked on govt directive.. had to get here thru a proxy.. ironical considering the context of your post being about non submitting to corruption...

10:58 PM  
Blogger Chaos said...

hmm chaos was me.. sanju @ wordpress :)

10:59 PM  
Blogger sidcruise said...

hopefully now you had your pass done lol, a good read :)

12:53 AM  
Blogger Dew Drops said...

@malika
they have. but i take a pass.

@anonymous
thanks

@mathew
u guys always underestimate us ;)

@babes
i think, together v can write an entire voume of "chuk chuk gaadi stories" LoL

@srijith
yup, that was a real joke. i cudn't stop laughing for a while aftr that

@inder
i know, i know. even here, that guy wud have understood its all 'cos of my punctuality in office LoL

@rowdy
had there been no "that" looks, i wud have tried bribing him for 100 bucks .... what else to say, it was in my destiny to loose 260 bucks

@jeseem
i have it. bought that very evening ;)

@sanju
i know yaar. i heard that is temporary.

@sidcruise
yup ....... i told u, i hav nothing against Indian Railways. Rather, i think, v shud learn a lesson or two from them

1:33 AM  
Blogger a country fellow said...

wonderful, keep up the good work. u r, arent u?
ok, i havent travelled in the mumbai trains, so i wont comment.

2:21 AM  
Blogger aqua said...

Good one. Normally if u have tickets in hand, they won’t ask you. May be from the facial expressions(~kalla lakshanam~) they are making out. Once I too have the same experience at the crowded Andheri over bridge. But he didn’t show much patience or mercy on me to offer a seat.. He had given me a carbon copy of the so called 'bill' of Rs.315.. Tried to bribe.. but no raksha..

3:31 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Hey.. I know personally someone like you... My mother!!!
Mother and I hd season ticket..hers expired, mine still valid.. she bought a child fare ticket for me, and travelled with me holding my season ticket.. The ticket collector fell for her excuse that she forgot it was her pass that expired!!

2:24 PM  
Blogger Prash said...

First, Good that you didn't bribe him. I am proud of you.

Second, shame on you that you didn't get your monthly pass on time.

Third, please make sure you wake up early.

Don't think such kind of situations exists only in India and in Bombay.

Three days ago, in Paris, in the same bus (numbered 63) I took to Jp's house for the banana cake, ticket checking officers came in and there were three ladies who had to pay ...two of them, didn't make any scene, just showed their identity card. And the lady (again another bourgeois looking old lady) made a big scene that she never takes the bus or a metro (to say that I don't take public transport) and she showed an old ticket. She payed a big amount...

The other two, assumed their responsibility, this lady was too snob!

I am happy to know that you didn't do it deliberately. Btw, you wouldn't know how much money they are wasting in Indian Railways. Your 30rupees is nothing. But still, 30rs is 30rs. Let's see how much money is allocated for Railway Minister's daily expenses...!!! *smile*

So don't worry. You won't do it again.

Cheer up!!

5:47 PM  
Blogger Gurdeepak said...

Everyday in this train travel,
a whole new world; do I unravel.

Some days I dodge time,
get up late and yet all’s fine.
While other days are heavy tides,
am found wanting, no matter I hide.

And then I wake up to a new morning,
unforgettable memory of the last day’s warning.

But soon I’m back to my mystic ways,
competing with time in this never-ending race!

11:30 PM  
Blogger surajsharma said...

Hey dewdy, you're not protesting against the blogspot ban? Please support the blue ribbon, we need your support if we ever plan to win this battle.

11:52 PM  
Blogger ~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

am so glad u r fine !

and thanx to Rose for starting u onto blogging !

1:50 AM  
Blogger Dew Drops said...

@country
mumbai trains !!!!!!!!!

@aqua
315?? I think he chargd u more

@sarah
he he

@prash
me a gud girl now

@gurdeepak
- competing with time in this never-ending race! -

how true .

@crappy
yup. but waiting for smetime. think v shud giv the govt sme time to make any sense out of the recent turmoils

@deepa
Yup. the credit (if any) goes to her

2:29 AM  
Blogger aqua said...

Yep Rs.315 is more. May be due to the 'kalla lakshanam' of my face forced him to charge more. It seems he charged me for the previous month's season ticket too...

3:00 AM  
Anonymous Mathew said...

Although laziness is a characteristic that I understand really well, I would never travel without a ticket. The fear of being caught would overwhelm me. Plus, I don't think I am as good an actor as you are...

3:02 AM  
Blogger iamyuva said...

not to kill experience blog into different subject but felt its important to share statitics :

Indian Railways is the world's largest commercial or utility employer with more than 1600000 regular employees.

Indian railways carries the most passengers (4 billion) in the world.

its largest transport company in the world under single management.

Railroads also carry about 60 percent of India's freight traffic (421 million tonnes) every year.

In 1976, the World Bank told India that it would find a solution (regarding preventing railway accidents). It sent an expert named Will Thomson to study the Bombay suburban system. When he came first, he was flabbergasted that 1.1 million people travelled up and down every day. They are flummoxed that the Indian railways infrastructure is so massive with such a wide network. Our requirement by the population is so high that the best in the world cannot even find the technology to take care of our gigantic system

would agree - so much to improve but indian railway come long-way (online reservation,..). its cheap & safe way to commute..

Lallu's men indeed are doing decent job..

3:36 AM  
Blogger pal said...

just to add something to subject... harward is going to make a case study on most efficient manager (lalu) for turn aroud of indian railways.. a budget showing profits afters eons, that to without increasing fare.. hats off

4:53 AM  
Blogger Daffodil said...

Dew has always been good in her acting skills or so she likes to think :-) But the 'kalla lakshanam' on her face is toooo evident for any intelligent person to miss.

1:14 AM  
Blogger Mridul Narayanan said...

are u sure you got receipt for 260 rs ? else u'r 260 went down as bribe :-)

once i jumped into a running train, of course without a ticket, only to find myself inside the reservation compartment. This is where you'll always find one or other guys in black coat, with the white and white underneath. i had to pay 160 to get rid of him. Once i got down there stands another guy on the platform with a similar coat "begging" for ticket. Thank god i had the receipt for the fine. Else he would've also taken another 160 from me.

3:12 PM  

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