The feature-packed bus shelters offered free Wi-Fi, chilled drinking water and FM radio but are now a shadow of their former selves thanks to looters and neglect.
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Twelve bus shelters in Kozhikode, Kerala that were packed with features like free Wi-Fi from BSNL, chilled drinking water, FM Radio, steel chairs and surveillance cameras connected to the Police Control Room, now exist in a sorry state. The terrible state of the shelters can be blamed on forces of nature, neglect, vandals and looters.
Out of the 12 shelters, one was annihilated by a fallen tree while the others were vandalised and looted for their aluminium panels, speakers and steel chairs.
The shelters were first set up in 2009 for Rs. 2.5 lakhs as part of a joint venture between the city and an advertising firm. It was expected that the project would ultimately involve see 100 similar shelters across Kozhikode but that project now appears truly dead as the state of the current shelters bear witness.
One of the bus-shelters before & after.
Kozhikode Mayor, Professor A.K. Premajam has blamed the state of the shelters on lack of public awareness and the public themselves who, as he stated to the Hindu, had the responsibility to “maintain and protect” the bus shelters.
Regional Transport Officer, Rajeev Puthalath criticised the shelters themselves saying that they were unnecessary and that the civic authorities were better off improving the basic conditions of the standard bus shelters instead.