Mangaluru, Sep 10, 2016: Reports state that KSRTC, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation’s efforts to deploy city buses on 14 remaining routes in Mangaluru – for which permits were given by the DK, Dakshina Kannada Regional Transport Authority on July 7 – have again run into rough weather after a tribunal directed the RTA to undertake the exercise afresh.
A technical error by the RTA has resulted in private bus operators approaching the Karnataka State Transport Appellate Tribunal challenging the July 7 proceedings of the RTA. As the two-page proceedings did not have the signature of one member — the Superintendent of Police of Dakshina Kannada — on the first page, the tribunal remanded the matter to the Authority on August 27 for fresh consideration. While the Deputy Commissioner is the Chairman, the Senior Regional Transport Officer is the Secretary of the Authority.
The corporation has been operating buses on 18 routes from December 2015 for which permits were given earlier.
The RTA, bowing to stiff opposition from private bus operators, had been postponing issue of permits to the KSRTC for over two years. It had to finally relent at the intervention of the State government and issued permits to operate 18 buses out of 35, for which permits were sought on August 22, 2015. In-charge Senior RTO in Mangaluru, G.S. Hegde stated that absence of SP’s signature was a faux pas , which could be rectified. In all likelihood, the RTA will meet again on September 21 to draw up fresh proceedings to issue permits to 14 buses.
Permits for three services were issued in separate one-page proceedings each and timings for these routes have already been given and KSRTC can commence services on these routes anytime, he added.
Replacing old buses
KSRTC Mangaluru Division, which had procured low-floor buses from Mysuru Division to deploy on city routes from December 2015, is in the process of replacing them with new buses it got under the AMRUT scheme last month.
Divisional Controller Vevekanand Hegde said that the corporation had got 20 standard low-floor buses under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation, which will replace buses already under operation on city routes. These old buses would be deployed in Kundapura sector as well as rural services around Mangaluru.
By the time fresh permits for 14 routes are issued and timings are given by the RTA, Mangaluru Division will receive the remaining 17 standard low-floor buses to be deployed on the new routes, he added.
Actual experience of the public in the last few days is that the buses inside and out side are a boon to regular travellers. All sections of users are happy to travel in comfort and safety comparatively. It is a good alternative for students, the sick and specially the aged. It is prayed that more routes and buses will be introduced and roads will shape accordingly.