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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Sunday, 14 July 2024 9.50 AM IST

No lessons learnt! KSRTC issues tender for procurement of 200 minibuses

ksrtc-mini-bus-ganesh-kum

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Getting past the dissonance among officials, KSRTC invited tenders for procuring 220 minibuses on Wednesday. It was first decided to buy a total of 400 buses but dwindled to 220 buses in the first phase. There was major disagreement in the decision as sceptics accused the tender was invited without learning lessons from previous experience, and not seeking expert opinion.

In 2001-03, during Ganesh Kumar’s tenure as transport minister and then later during N Shaktan’s time, minibuses were bought for ordinary service and mostly to run on routes with feeble transport service. In 2024, the KSRTC is all set to splash money on minibuses, to serve as fast passengers. Tenders are invited for the purchase of 10.5-meter-long 'four-cylinder' diesel buses with a year's warranty. The last date for submission of tenders is July 1. Technical bids will be opened on July 3.

Kerala Kaumudi had reported on June 9 that KSRTC is again dusting off the old minibus project which incurred heavy losses and was abandoned midway. The purchase of the minibus was taken from KTDFC at exorbitant interest rates. When the transport department moved to invite tenders for the third time even before the buses tendered for the second phase arrived, the additional secretary of the finance department, who was the financial advisor of KSRTC at that time, raised objections. KSRTC would have been mired in much worse debt if they had ignored the order of the financial advisor.

  • Operation cost is similar for regular buses and minibuses. However, the passengers will not fit much in the mini-bus

  • A normal bus has up to 52 seats for passengers. There is also a provision to carry 25% passengers of the seating capacity.

  • The minibus has 38 seats. Long-distance commuters will hesitate to travel on this bus as there will be no room for more people to stand.
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TAGS: KSRTC, MINIBUS, KERALA, GANESH KUMAR, MINISTER, DISAGREEMENT
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