City’s lone bus terminal lacks basic facilities


The only bus terminal operating in the federal capital, called the Karachi Company bus terminal, has been in a dilapidated condition for a long time and demanding the immediate attention on part of the Capital Development Authority (CDA).
Thronged by well over 1,000 passengers daily, the bus terminal lacks most of the basic facilities like proper waiting rooms, clean premises, bus sheds and appropriate toilets.
Many believe the indifferent attitude of CDA Chairman Inayat Elahi is one of the major reasons for all the problems being faced by the passengers and transporters. During the survey of the bus terminal, Pakistan Today observed that there was no public toilet, while two lavatories in the only waiting room also did not function.
The waiting room itself was in falling to pieces and did not have the capacity to accommodate all of its visitors. Male passengers were facing a tougher time than all others as they had to sit in the terminal’s without-a-shade veranda in the scorching summer heat.
“We have to face a lot of problems due to the unavailability of proper washrooms at the terminal, as we have to spend the entire day here,” Akhtar, a staff member at the terminal, said.
Passengers also expressed similar problem. “We are forced to come here as it is the only bus stop in the city and the CDA should realise the condition it is in,” a passenger Moin Iftikhar said.
With the gutters of the terminal turning into a cesspool of filth, the visitors are facing serious health hazards. Stagnant water accumulated in various ditches reflected the poor performance of the CDA. Most of the passengers were of the view that besides the negligence of the CDA, the poor administration of the bus terminal was also responsible for the traveller’s sufferings.
Talking to Pakistan Today, the terminal’s transport manager Malik Zafar said it was the responsibility of the CDA to provide basic facilities for travellers.
He said the CDA had been receiving Rs 35 million from the contractor ruining the terminal. “We have made repeated requests to the civic body to upgrade the facility, but to no avail,” he said, adding that they were aware of the problems being faced by the passengers.
He regretted that the bus stop had no boundary walls, which was a great security concern. “Top transport companies, including Four Star Travels, Skyways, Abdullah Transport, Niazi Transport and Al-Makkah Transport, are experiencing a lot of problems due to a lack of sheds,” he lamented.
Several drivers complained that they had to park their buses under the scorching summer sun due to which the buses’ air conditioners were often rendered useless. The transport manager added, “At the time of the oath-taking ceremony of Tajir Itehhad, the CDA chairman had promised to upgrade the Karachi Company bus terminal, but nothing has been done so far. We have written several applications to the CDA to construct proper toilets, waiting rooms and a shed at the bus stop, but a reply is still awaited.” Zafar said the administration was doing its best to provide every facility to the passengers on a self-help basis, demanding that CDA upgrade the terminal on a priority basis.