TODAY -

Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM) buses sit idle
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, May 26 2012: Except for two which are plying between Thangal Keithel and Paona Keithel, all the 18 semi-low floor buses provided by the Government of India to the State under Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM) have been sitting idle without delivering any service to the public.

After all commercial and private vehicles were prohibited from entering Thangal Keithel and Paona Keithel, two semi-low floor buses were made operational to carry people between the two important commercial centres since February 23 this year.

The two buses have been plying between Paona Keithel and Thangal Keithel from 10 am to 4 pm everyday.

Talking with The Sangai Express, some people who have been travelling in the two buses regularly conveyed their desire to extend routes of the two buses beyond Paona Keithel and Thangal Keithel.

The buses can serve greater number of people if their routes are extended beyond Imphal city proper.

They said that the two buses are more comfortable and their fares relatively cheap.

One driver of the semi-low floor bus said that around 650 to 700 passengers travelled in his bus every day.

He said that he can make six to and fro trips in a day.

Each bus can earn Rs 2000 to Rs 3500 daily as against 40 litres of diesel provided for a day.

Many passengers opined that the semi-low floor buses can serve the public better if their routes are extended till Koirengei, Tulihal Airport, Manipur University and Palace Compound by making all the buses operational which are now sitting idle.

Even as entry of public vehicles have been banned from entering Paona Keithel and Thangal Keithel, vehicles of some VIPs could be seen parked at these market places.

Even when movement of the semi-low floor buses were impeded by vehicles belonging to VIPs, none including law enforcing agencies dare raise a voice.

The vehicles belonging to VIPs were removed only after contacting superior officers.

Only then, the buses can resume movement.

Traffic Police personnel who have been serving as conductors in the semi-low floor buses have also been giving awareness class on how to board and get down from the bus.

However, the two semi-low floor buses have turned out to be a big burden for police, said DSP Y Victoria.

It would be more systematic if the buses are operated by a designated committee.

As of know, it remains a mystery when and where the remaining semi-low floor buses would be put into service.

Tenders have been floated repeatedly to choose private firms which can operate the buses under PPP model.

But there has been no response from any firm till date.


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