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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Friday, 24 May 2024 12.59 PM IST

KSRTC faces backlash over drastic reduction in ordinary bus services

ganesh

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: KSRTC's extensive reduction of ordinary services citing lack of profitability is causing concern among the public. Over the past three months, daily service has decreased by one lakh kilometers. The department's policy is to ensure that all trips generate at least Rs. 28 per kilometer.

Services particularly affected are those after 10 am to 3 pm and night services. Passengers, especially in southern and hilly areas of the capital district where only KSRTC operates, often have to wait for hours by the roadside. After 8 pm, most routes have no bus services.

Three months ago, the daily service covered 15 lakh km, but now it's less than 14 lakh km, with the number of buses decreasing from 4500-4750 to 3900-4000 per day. The Transport Minister's instructions prompted route modifications starting with ordinary buses in Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam districts and extending gradually to other districts. KSRTC itself claims to have reduced 52,456 km of unprofitable service statewide.

Night trips were suspended in anticipation of the resumption of overnight stay services. Previously, the last stay bus trip was between 10 and 11 pm, but now it ends at 8 or 9 pm, resuming only when there's sufficient demand in the morning. Trade Unions haven't objected as employees are still getting their duties.

Following KSRTC's lead, private buses have also begun reducing trips during off-peak hours. When complaints arose, the Transport Minister instructed the motor vehicle department to take action against private buses canceling trips. Private bus owners protested, questioning whether they could follow KSRTC's actions.

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