Bhuwan's Ramblings

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Highway to Hell?

The Indian Express calls it the highway to hell, Daily News & Analysis calls it a dream turned into nightmare and The Hindustan Times gives account of the public’s brewing anger … No, I am not talking about London's Fleet Street leading to Mrs. Lovett’s meat pies!

I am talking about the newly opened Delhi–Gurgaon Toll Expressway that promised to reduce the travel time between the two cities to a quick 15 minutes. It has multiple flyovers, wide lanes, no traffic signals, service lanes, two-wheeler and slow vehicle prohibition … what went wrong?

Looks like that in all the excitement the developers ironically forgot about part that will give them revenue: The Toll Plaza. It seems that they were opened in a hurry without any thought, planning or signage! The result: long crawling lines.

I am, however, of the opinion that the driving public is equally at fault in this case compounding the problem. It is about time that highway users understand and acquire the toll-plaza culture. (Something like beer is an acquired taste!) The success of a toll plaza is dependent on the efficiency of each and every vehicle and the realization that there are others waiting behind. Carrying exact change to the toll booth is imperative and equally important is keeping this change handy so that it can be reached in a split of a second. Arguing with the toll booth operator is the worst thing that any body can do, it stops the traffic and makes the operator less efficient. If there is a problem then the tollway authorities should be contacted. The toll booth operator cannot help.

Tollways are the future not only in India, but also across the world. We all have to work together to make it a joyride!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Fired from job for not smoking

No, its not a typo or a mischievous child scribbling not before the word smoking.

This is a true incident that happened in Berlin, as reported by Reuters, where an owner of a small German computer company fired three non-smoking workers because they were threatening to disturb the peace after they requested a smoke-free environment. He said that this was his revenge as everybody picks on smokers these days and promised to hire only smokers from now on.

It is important to note that Germany introduced non-smoking rules in pubs and restaurants on January 1, 2008, but Germans working in small offices are still allowed to smoke.

This is in contrast to my blog post more than a year ago, smokers need not apply.