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City buses remain defunct in Koraput

As many as 20 buses with sitting capacity of 30 each were permitted to run between Kotpad-Jeypore-Damanjodi

By Priyadarshini Pattnaik in Koraput
  • Published 7.10.18, 1:04 AM
  • Updated 7.10.18, 1:04 AM
  • a min read
A fleet of defunct city buses at Jeypore depot in Koraput. Telegraph picture

The much-hyped city bus services in the district has become paralysed with at least 16 out of 20 buses lying defunct for the past several months at its Jeypore depot.

Through videoconferencing, chief minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the service at Jeypore on June 30, 2016. As many as 20 buses with sitting capacity of 30 each were permitted to run between Kotpad-Jeypore-Damanjodi. Special fare and special route charts had also been prepared for it.

While a private party had obtained tender to run the services for a period of seven years, the administration formed a trust in the name of Jeypore-Koraput-Sunabeda Urban Transport Trust for managing the services.

But, buses have been lying defunct for the past few months, and the authorities concerned have reportedly not taken any action.

“The city bus services were very much helpful for commuters. But at present, only four buses are plying on a few routes. The remaining buses are biting the dust, and it’s just wastage of public money. The authorities concerned should take immediate steps to ensure that the buses resume service before they get completely damaged,” said a social activist, Ajit Patra.

The buses are equipped with CCTV cameras and drivers and conductors were given special training not to misbehave with the passengers and ensure their safety. A special bus terminal was constructed at Jeypore.

“We use to feel safe and comfort while travelling in the city buses for their security features. However, as the service stopped we are now forced to travel in private buses in great problem,” said Sangeet Jena, a college student, who travels from Koraput to Jeypore to attend classes.

Koraput district collector K. Sudarshan Chakravarthy said: “We will look into the matter, and action will be taken to ensure that all the buses resume service.”

The city bus services have marred into controversy from the day of its inauguration with private operators objecting their plying on certain routes. Later, it was decided that the city buses would ply in the urban areas and not run inside the rural areas.

Congress whip and Jeypore MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati has urged the administration to sort out the problem at the earliest to ensure plying of the city buses.