‘Kilometre scheme’ fails to get response
Ruchika M Khanna
Chandigarh, January 8
The Punjab Authorities’s plan to function over 200 new buses within the state has did not take off. Solely two individuals have evinced curiosity in working the buses, although the federal government has floated tenders twice.
The state-run Pepsu Roadways Transport Company (PRTC) had determined to function buses on 219 routes, underneath the kilometre scheme, and its tenders have been initially floated in July. Nevertheless, solely two operators evinced curiosity in working the buses. Because of this, the tender for working 217 buses was once more floated in September final 12 months. It discovered no takers.
About PRTC’s scheme
- A non-public operator buys a bus and provides it on an preliminary six-year lease to the Transport Division
- The bus is operated by the state authorities, with the federal government conductors being on board, although the driving force is employed by the operator
- The proprietor will get compensated based mostly on the kilometres it runs and the class of the bus
This has induced the state authorities to analyse the explanations for the dearth of curiosity within the scheme, the place buses are to be leased from personal events and operated by the state authorities. It’s learnt that the reason being the free bus rides allowed to girls passengers, which has made public transportation within the state economically unviable. The ladies passengers have been allowed free journey on government-run buses by the earlier Congress authorities.
We’re dedicated to bettering public transport and all mandatory steps might be taken toprovide reasonably priced transport to all. The division is analysing varied points of the scheme not taking off. —Laljit Singh Bhullar, Transport Minister
JS Grewal of Small Scale District Bus Operators’ Affiliation mentioned another excuse for the scheme not taking off was a court docket order banning using authorities allow for working private-owned buses. “The Transport Division should discover a option to circumvent this. Until that is carried out, transporters might be cautious,” he mentioned.
Rajinder Singh Bajwa, secretary of the Punjab Motor Union (an organisation of passenger street transporters), mentioned operators have been cautious of working buses underneath the kilometre scheme, in wake of free journey to girls passengers. “An individual will spend round Rs 30 lakh to purchase a bus and provides it on lease. If he isn’t getting any return on funding, who will go for it? Additionally, the buses which can be run underneath the kilometre scheme meet the identical destiny as the opposite government-run buses. They get to function on the profitable routes, however they are going to get off-peak agenda, whereby only a few passengers might be there,” he added.
It could be talked about that even the Punjab Roadways PRTC Contract Staff’ Union has opposed the transfer to begin these buses underneath kilometre scheme. Harkesh Kumar, senior vp of the union, mentioned the union had already warned the federal government in opposition to working the buses underneath the kilometre scheme. “Now we have warned that no conductors might be do responsibility on these buses, which is able to make it tough for the federal government to function these,” he mentioned.