Thursday 25 April 2019

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Infrastructure | Transport

Nationalisation to begin with trunk routes

 

Swimming against the national tide of privatisation, the Goa government has finally decided to go ahead with nationalisation of three trunk routes of public bus transport in the tourist state, from March next year.

The four-month old coalition government has decided to go ahead with the decision taken by the erstwhile Congress government to nationalise the bus transport, the only form of public conveyance available in the tourist state, for efficient transport system.

With urbanisation developing at a fast pace as well as increasing number of tourist inflow, overcrowding and mismanagement of private bus operators has become a major headache for the travellers here. Overspeeding of buses and competing with each other has caused several fatal accidents.

The one-time powerful private bus lobby in the state had also become a major irritant with repeated demands of hike in bus fares, though actually they charge much less than the usual fare to attract passenger. This has obviously affected the state-owned Kadamba Transport Corporation, which incur losses above Rs one crore annually.

While most of the KTC's routes to villages run in losses, the government has now decided to nationalise three profit-making trunk routes linking cites of Panaji, Margao and Vasco, which were dominated by the private bus operators till date. It would be solely run by the KTC.

Though the private bus operators have threatened state-wide bandh in protest of the government decision, the authorities seem determined to go ahead with its decision. Accordingly, the KTC has decided to purchase 50 new buses to run on these routes.

While minimum 100 buses are needed to operate these prime routes, says transport minister Fatima D'Sa, the government would get new buses on these routes in a phase-wise manner. The KTC has sought a loan of Rs five crore from state-owned Economic Development Corporation and the Industrial Development Corporation to purchase new buses.






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