16 May 2018

Bombay Port Trust

A Mumbai Private Bus Story. 

In many of India's towns and cities there are two bus stands. A Government Bus Stand and the the Private Bus Stand.

Mumbai has a ST bus stand in Lower Parel and a new one is being built near Dadar station where the 'Asiad Buses' go to Pune. Borivali has a bus stand too with buses to all parts of Maharashtra. However, the one in Borivali is smaller than the one in Thane which has a lot more services.

ST Bus Stand, Lower Parel

Does Mumbai have a private bus stand?

It is the private bus companies that ferry more people than the State Transport or ST buses to and from Mumbai and they do not have a proper bus stand. However, there are specific places in the city where buses terminate, start or stop. Crawford market was probably the main one once upon a time but now they depart from other places across Fort and South Bombay. Borivali is a major starting point for buses.

The images here are not of the places where people alight or depart, it is about one of the places where the buses are parked during the day. The drivers need rest, the buses need to be cleaned, among other things.

Bus depots.

Based on which route they take (NH4 (Most of Deccan) ,NH3 (Old Agra road to Khandesh, MP and parts of Vidarbha)  and NH8 (Gujarat, DN&H, Rajasthan), they have specific parking space during the day. 

You will find a lot of buses lining the streets in a few places. P D'Mello Road near CSMT, the road opposite the Race Course in Mahalaxmi, the streets of Borivali and the open space inside Bombay Port Trust, between Cotton Green and Reay Road Station on the Harbour Line. These images are from this place.

Most of the buses parked here ply on the NH8 towards Gujarat and Rajasthan. Almost every city and little towns in those states are serviced by the buses here. If you have noticed, there are very few State Transport buses from these two states coming to Mumbai.

There are also a few buses that ply to the Deccan parked here too.

The designs and images on the bus are interesting. It's all about speed and comfort. For example: a version of the Pegasus is very popular.

Anyone who has travelled by an AC night bus will know that the temperature can be quite antarctic in the moving ice boxes.

A few designs on the sides of these long distance buses:

The BPT would've once been a bustling place but not anymore. While we still have godowns, a few goods trains and trucks visiting, it is one of the few open spaces that are available for these buses to park. The government has plans to use the BPT land to create a business district, but that is in the future.

A little bit of shade for the buses and the people who live in it.

And a wash.

There are a few dhabas, cigarette shops and places to but food and necessities for the drivers and cleaners of these private buses. 

A ear cleaner:

And a small shrine.

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