The New Trivandrum Thampanoor KSRTC Central Bus Terminal

The front facade of the huge, towering new KSRTC central bus station building (still under construction) at Thampanoor, Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala. The terminal complex is the biggest bus station in Kerala and is also the headquarters and central offices of the Kerala State Transport Corporation (KSRTC). The ground floor of the station handles bus arrivals and departures with 30 departure bus bays and 5 arrival bays capable of handling upto 3000 bus schedules a day, most of them being KSRTC’s long distance schedules, all which originate and depart from here. The building itself has 12 stories and can house a multiplex, food courts, a number of government offices, a convention center and also has two 5 story multlevel parking centers for 350 cars and 400 two wheelers. There was an old, overcrowded crumbling bus station building that was pulled down to construct this behemoth in its place. Really an amazing development!

Kochi’s “Team Oranje” Volvo Low Floor Buses Stand in a Row!

Four of Kochi’s JnNURM Volvo “Low Floor” City buses (B7RLE chassis) take rest standing next to each other in a row at the Ernakulam depot (bus station) on a pleasant evening. The buses are JNK3, JNK6, JNK8 and JNK25. I had taken a ride in JNK25 earlier in the day from South to Vyttila. It definitely pleasing to the eye seeing the bright orange livery of Kerala KSRTC Volvos, or as they say, in the colors of the Netherlands (Holland) football team! 🙂 And they are much better maintained than most of BMTC’s Volvo city buses!

The Faded Orange Train Waits Beside the Green Wall

Erode’s classic electric locomotive WAP4 #22220 heading an equally famous train the 16318 Jammu – Kanyakumari Himasagar Express waits patiently on the mainline at Ettumanur, Kerala for the Jan Shatabdi to cross it on the loop on the KTYM – MNTT single line. The loco used to be bright orange but the color has faded drastically over time. It stands next to a very wet and striking green wall covered by moss and plants thanks to the monsoon rains resulting in shocking contrast in the picture. The loco must be Erode’s last few remaining locomotives with center mounted headlamps and should be scheduled for overhaul soon. After its journey of 3400+ km, the train was 2 hours late, very dirty and smelled like a poultry farm.

Vamos Argentina! From Kaduthuruthy, Kerala

Argentina Fans Proclaim their Love for the Team in Kerala. Kerala is crazy about football and this craziness reaches a fever pitch during every FIFA World Cup. Fans put up huge hoardings with graphics printed on flex sheets proclaiming love and tributes for their favorite teams which mostly happen to be Brazil and Argentina, which many people are hard core, die hard fans of. This is more prevalent in Malabar, the northern part of the state. Here is a rather smaller flex board put up by some fans of the Argentinian team in Kaduthuruthy, a village in South Kerala in Kottayam district. The hoarding says: “We have not come to challenge anyone, but to face challenges with beautiful football… To the land of the arrogant, with a little arrogance….”

WAP4 22205 Heads the Full LHB Howrah Premium AC Special

Santragachi (SRC)’s tired-looking WAP4 #22205 heads the Bangalore Yeshwantpur – Kolkata Howrah AC “Premium” Special Express as it slowly rolls past Baiyyappanahalli railway station. The train had a full LHB rake (consist). LHB coaches are new technology spacious and lightweight aluminum coaches with big windows now found on all Rajdhanis and Shatabdis. It was an impossibly scorching day and I would have rather been inside the AC train than outside it.

Interiors of the Kochi Central Mall, Ernakulam

How the new Kochi Central Mall on MG Road, Ernakulam looks like from the inside. The interiors are very upscale, very clean and well spaced out, in all very tastefully done with colors everywhere as you can see in this photo. This picture was taken from the first floor above the entrance. The foot court with its lighted roof is at the top. The interior layout of the mall vaguely reminds one of The Forum, Koramangala, Bangalore. A mall like would have been unimaginable in Kerala a decade back, when yours truly was strutting around the city, hoping there was something else than the Marine Drive and some juice parlors to hang out. Today’s kids are lucky.