How do we check vax certificates of commuters, ask bus drivers, taxi drivers | Bombay News


MUMBAI Although BrihanMumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has asked its 27 city bus depots to verify vaccination certificates before allowing passengers to board the buses, commuters and bus drivers have put question its feasibility.

They also highlighted potential overcrowding outside of bus depots and bus stops, long queues and delays in operating buses.

The Maharashtra government on Saturday issued an order allowing only fully vaccinated passengers to travel by public transport.

Bus operators, black and yellow cab drivers have expressed apprehension about the order and said they have already suffered losses during the blockages. They can’t afford to only allow vaccinated commuters.

The BEST circulated the order of the government of Maharashtra to its bus depots on Saturday evening. However, a few drivers and bus drivers said they were unaware of such an order and if implemented it would create confusion.

“We are not yet aware of such an order, but it is almost impossible to screen all passengers. Screening and clearing passengers will result in long queues at bus stops, especially during office hours, ”said a BEST driver who declined to be named.

Employees stressed that BEST should develop a mechanism to verify certificates in order to avoid delays and confusion.

Passengers said that while allowing vaccinated passengers on buses and other public transport is a good step, but implementation is difficult.

“The implementation would not be practical due to the number of passengers traveling during peak hours,” said Aarti Sharma, a resident of Bandra.

Shirish Deshpande of Mumbai Grahak Panchy (MGP), said that while the government’s prompt action is appreciated, passengers should be allowed to travel at their own risk. “The government can take tough measures and impose fines, but there could be unreasonable restrictions. Social distance outside of bus stops could also be reduced, ”said Deshpande, president of MGP.

BEST officials said a process would be developed in the coming days that would be implemented in all bus depots. “The initial order of the state government has been passed on to the depot directors. We will develop a process on how vaccine certificates will be verified, ”said a senior BEST official.

Taxi unions said they asked drivers to display a sign saying “no vaccination, no trip”, but said it was impossible for drivers to check vaccination certificates.

“The drivers suffered heavy losses throughout the blockades. It is impossible to verify each passenger’s certificate as this will increase the monetary loss. All coronavirus protocols will be followed by taxi drivers, ”said AL Quadros, head of the Mumbai Taximen Union.


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