Once again, some opposition chief ministers have filed petitions against their Governors in the Supreme Court for allegedly exceeding their roles.
The state transport department has decided to introduce additional buses and launch services for commuters who are facing inconvenience after the closure of Tallah Bridge. The department has decided to increase the number of 34-seater midi buses, which are being operated additionally in the recently changed routes. The West Bengal Transport Corporation (WBTC) run-buses, currently 24 in number, will be increased to 50 by Diwali. Apart from this, 24-seater mini buses numbering 100 will be introduced in these routes from 1 November.
The appbased bus services will be running with the existing fare and there will be no hike in their rates. The fleet of 100 buses will get several more such vehicles after a review that is to be carried out every fortnight. According to the state transport minister Mr Suvendu Adhikari, 84 24-seater mini buses are already running in Behala, Joka and Haridevpur areas and have been well received by the commuters. In addition to additional buses, the department is also taking initiatives to introduce more launch services along Kutighat to Fairly.
“At present, there are two launch services which are operational. Soon, there will be four such services from next Monday,” informed Mr Adhikari. “The services will be increased by 10 within the next 10 days and will be available every 10 minutes between 8 am to 8 pm. The timings will be subject to the weather conditions,” he added. The minister will visit the ghat to take a stock of the situation on Monday. Mr Adhikari also held a meeting with traffic wings of Kolkata Police and West Bengal Police, team of transport department, representatives of Metro railway and circular railway at Maidan Tent today.
“We have decided a timeline for the quick implementation of the initiatives that have been planned. Although representative of circular railway have not been able to offer any hope on increasing the services, officials of Metro railway informed that they are already running four additional services. Soon there will be six more services,” he added. In order to bring relief to the commuters of the route, the department has also identified 20 routes where the strength of auto rickshaws will be increased.
The officials of Barrackpore Police Commissionerate are also considering schemes to run four or five-seater mini vans. The department will also launch coloured maps of the changed routes. The maps will be put up at various public places from Howrah to Dunlop to familiarise the commuters with the changes in the routes resulting from the closure of Tallah bridge. Further, as many as 10 motor vehicle inspectors will be deployed under the supervision of the deputy director of transport to check if the initiatives are being implemented properly.
The department will set up a control unit and a CCTV control unit for monitoring and mapping of the route diversions following the closure of Tallah Bridge. For resolving the issues pertaining to the private bus owners, the transport department has called a meeting with the private and mini bus operators, representatives of online app cabs and taxi associations along with members of the management committees of the 20 auto routes on Monday at Kasba Transport department office.