Berhampur, July 26 (LocalWire): As many as ten city buses purchased over a year ago are lying parked at the newly constructed bus depot at Haladiapadara, on the outskirts of the Silk City.
Ganjam Urban Transport Services Limited (GUTSL), had procured ten buses for Rs 3 crore in 24 April last year in order to expand the city bus services to other nearby towns.
The buses were handed over to GUTSL in May, 2018. Since then the buses are gathering dust without operating.
The buses are not operating since the transport department did not give route permit, said a senior officer of Berhampur Development Authority (BeDA), one of the members of the GUTSL.
‘It’s not only the problem of Berhampur but across the state,’said BeDA secretary Sambit Rout.
The GUTSL had decided to operate these buses in new routes that included Hinjili, Purushottmpur, Digapahandi and Khallikote, where the city bus services were not available but the transport department did not give permission for the new routes after private bus owners protested, sources said.
Presently 32 buses are plying in different routes from Berhampur, including Chhatrapur, Gopalpur, Tara Tarini.
‘Now we are planning to operate these buses that are parked idle as shuttle buses for passengers from Haladiapadara bus stand to New Bus-Strand in the city,’ said BeDA vice chairman Chakravarti Singh Rathore.
The BeDA was planning to start operating the Haladiapadara bus stand from next month after operating only government buses.
‘Several shuttle buses will be required to ferry passengers when the Haladiapadara bus stand begins to operate.
We will utilize these buses as shuttle buses,’ said Rathore, who is also the commissioner of Berhampur Municipal Corporation (BeMC).
He said they have sought permission from the government to operate the buses.
The city bus services had started in Berhampur in February 2014.
Initially, state-owned Odisha State Road Transport Corporation had managed to operate the buses and later on handed over to a private entrepreneur.
The new buses would also be managed by the private operators, sources said.
The GUTSL was formed under the chairmanship of the district Collector. The other members of the SPV are chairman, BDA and the chairpersons of Hinjili, Gopalpur and Chhatrapur NACs. The authorized share capital of the company would be Rs one crore.