In these crowded times, a reserved seat is a much appreciated commodity. If you are a woman, a senior citizen, or a physically challenged person, there’s a space of your own in a BEST bus. But beyond the policy and its attached fine, I think its a wonderful credit to this city, its men and women that people do get the seat they deserve.
Blueline buses too have reservations for women. Except that you’d be lucky to get any seat. I once boarded a Blueline going to Najafgarh. Two men sitting in the reserved seats were being throughly abused by women. “Namard Kahin ke”, “Choodiyan pehen lo”, “Langda hai kya?”, “Gadhe…!!” rang out in the air. The men on the other hand, refused to give up the seats, called women names, and tried to outshout them. I remember thinking then, “This will never happen in Bombay”. Thankfully, I have yet to be proved wrong on this one.
The immediate provocation of this post is an incident that took place in a bus this noon. A group of construction workers boarded the mildly crowded bus at Powai. A woman among them strode up the aisle, and confidently called out to the chap sitting on a reserved seat “Aye seth, Ooth”, she said. She got the seat.