The transport departments of Odisha and Bihar have renewed the agreement to operate direct bus services passing through Jharkhand on 33 routes covering almost 21867 kilometres.
In the earlier agreement signed between the two eastern states, the public transport services were in operation on 15 routes covering a total distance of 9,276 kilometres, the State Transport Authority (STA) officials said on Saturday.
Services on the new and longer routes will boost connectivity of pilgrim and tourism centres besides the places of educational importance of the two states.
With a new agreement in place, people commuting to Patna, Bihar Sharif, Deoghar, Gaya, Aurangabad, Darbhanga, Rajgir, Bhagalpur, Buxer, Siwan, Aara, Hajipur, Chapara and Nawada from different parts of Odisha including Puri, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Baripada, Balasore, Rourkela, Sambalpur, Sundergarh and many other places will be immensely benefited, STA said.
“As per the new agreement Odisha buses will cover 17,611 km in Bihar while Bihar buses will cover 8784 km in Odisha. The buses will ply via Jharkhand covering a distance of 8032 km in the state. This is a big step towards facilitating road transport in the state. The agreement between the transport departments of Bihar and Odisha would also help in strengthening the cultural roots.” Brajabandhu Bhol, Secretary, State Transport Authority, Odisha said while shedding light on the agreement.
The new inter-state agreement with Bihar will also open the door for new inter-state bus permits. With the opening up of new routes, around 100 permits and trips will be accorded approval in both the states, the official said.
Talks for similar agreements with West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are also in advance stage, he added.