Authorities of the North Bengal State Transport Corporation (NBSTC), the state-run transport company headquartered here, have decided to decorate the buses with pictures of prominent personalities and heritage sites of the district.
NBSTC chairman Parthapratim Roy said on Thursday that in each bus, they will put up pictures of Jagaddipendra Narayan, the last king of erstwhile princely state of Cooch Behar, and Panchanan Barma, the most revered statesman of the Rajbanshis.
In the colonial era, Jagaddipendra Narayan had opened this bus service in his princely state and named it the Cooch Behar State Transport. In Independent India, the bus service was renamed the NBSTC by then Bengal chief minister B.C. Roy.
“Initially, we will put up their photographs and those of different heritage sites of Cooch Behar such as the royal palace, famous temples and old buildings in the 50-odd buses of our existing fleet. The buses would be painted afresh in blue and white colours and the official logo and the name would be shown in a more prominent manner in each bus,” said Roy.
As of now, NBSTC has around 400 buses which run on 350-odd routes.
The reason for seeking to show the logo and the name on NBSTC buses with more prominence is because during the past few years, a number of private bus owners have also painted their buses in colours similar to the NBSTC’s blue and white.
“These private buses also run with initials similar to NBSTC to draw passengers. We will not let it happen. A passenger should have a clear choice before him in case he intends to board an NBSTC bus,” the chairman said.
Roy said the transport corporation will also take up the task to repair 100-odd defunct buses. “We are also surveying some routes where bus services were earlier withdrawn. There are plans to reopen some closed NBSTC depots across north Bengal,” he added.