Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Power of 50 Paisa

[Some of the content in this post is not appropriate for all audience, as it contains some suggestive material. Readers' discretion is required.]

I think I can start a separate blog for my travel experience; don't think that it would be about tourist spots and my holiday plans; it is about how horrible traveling has become today and the various aspects of traveling.

Let me tell you one of the various aspects. It is the 50 paisa the bus conductors never give back. It happens in Tamil Nadu, India. If the ticket costs X rupees 50 paisa, then it could very well be considered as Y rupees, where Y = X + 1. It is almost always the case. The only way you can get that 50 paisa, is to give a 50 paisa and get one rupees instead.

In my personal experience, it has happened many a times. Very very rarely a few conductors give back to money, but rest of the time, it is impossible. If you ask that 50 paisa change, they would get furious as though we asked a night-out with their wife. Their attitude gets very bad even if you ask for the first time.

You wont believe me, but this happened to me. Once, when I had to get one rupee as remaining, the bus conductor gave me 50 paisa. It really happened to me. If I had to get 50 paisa, he would not have given that :) I didn't ask for another 50 paisa as I thought I can use that 50 paisa somewhere else to save someother time.

The reason I don't ask remaining money is because of some other experience. Once, when I was in a bus, a passenger had to get .5 rupee as balance. As usual, the conductor didn't give that money back. But the passenger was a tough guy (mentally, not physically). He kept asking for the balance and the conductor kept saying he would give it later. Both of them got furious and there was almost a fight.

The driver stopped the bus and they both started shouting at that guy. So, he had to get down. Of course, when he left, he said something like, *I would consider that I had given you that 50 paisa for * [I would say it was because he was furious and went to Level II. Had that guy been in Level I, he might have stopped with the wife :). A sheer observation of public and sometimes myself, gave this knowledge. There is a Level III which is very rare to see or to get, which I wont discuss here].

There are two things that could be done. They are:
  1. The government has to change all the ticket price to be of a integer (no decimal parts). If government does that, I am sure its revenue could increase in crores per week.
  2. If someone is denied a 50 paisa, they can watch for others and ask them to give 50 paisa less. An understanding that people has to have, but very hard to achieve that.