In Chennai, the stand-offs between bus crew and college students are legendary.
On Wednesday, motorists in Royapettah were witness to yet another display of college students’ aggression, but the driver of a city bus would not give in this time. He resorted to a protest in his own style, hoping to shame the students publicly.
Motorists travelling on Peters Road had just seen a group of students board the bus (24 C, Avadi-Vivekanandar Illam) around 1 p.m. As they travelled further down, they were taken by surprise as the bus screeched to a halt all of a sudden. There was a further surprise in store, as the driver went on to park the vehicle diagonally across the road, preventing the flow of traffic on the flyover on either sides.
There was just about enough space for motorists to squeeze through the narrow space between the bus and the flyover’s protective railing. People on the flyover, as well those on the road below, were wondering if an accident had taken place. Only on moving ahead did everyone realise that the bus driver had parked the vehicle this way as a means of “protest.”
“The students were banging the bus so hard and were singing songs. They were very loud, and irritating,” said the driver, attached to Mandaveli depot. Sensing that their behaviour attracted criticism from not just the MTC crew, but other motorists as well, the students got down from the bus. Some of them even jumped down from the flyover and ran away. After all the students got down and after he was pacified by other motorists, the driver resumed the journey, but not before embarrassing a group of college students, whose uncouth behaviour on buses in Chennai has come under flak from all sections of the society.