Rapid assessment of covid appropriate norms for public transport in a city of Eastern India, Bhubaneswar during pandemic of Covid 19.
Pandemic of Covid 19 has forced every country to change its life and routine and being an airborne disease, most dramatic changes have been adopted in the travel or transport sector. This is of immense relevance for a country like India, where the population crowding is maximal for any public transport facility. Buses, trains, and airways, in the order of cost-effectiveness and affordability, have always been the preferred form of public transport, and norms of hygiene, crowding, and safety in these sectors have always been the subject of concern and compromise for any place in the country. So in the given situation of the pandemic, an uphill task is confronting the policymakers and public to break their habits and behaviour and cope and comply with the new directives, as for this disease, in the absence of a cure, the best measure is prevention alone.
Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, a state in Eastern India, is an educational and industrial hub, has come up rapidly as a fast developing city in the last decade. A descriptive qualitative study was conducted to review the covid appropriate norms for all public transport uses in the city and to understand the level of integration between government norms and public compliance.. This city has been the hot spot for cases in both the phases (July 2020 and then resurge in May 2021) of the pandemic and hence offered a good understanding of the curbs reinforced on travel and their effectiveness. The article reinforces that with a shocking comeback of the realm of infectious disease, the norms of travel as having come out in the article should and would perhaps stay for a long time. The disease respells the need for public calm and discipline at the time of travel, much contrary to our reckless practices of human habits of overcrowding, eating, spitting, and spilling garbage anywhere and high on priority use of masks, every time we step out of the house.
Keywords: public transport, lockdown, masks, RT PCR, and sanitization.