Khammam: Transport Minister P Ajay Kumar on Wednesday cautioned temporary staff operating TSRTC buses not to collect extra charges from passengers in addition to the prescribed RTC ticket fares. He said there were complaints from passengers that the temporary conductors were collecting additional charges from the passengers. Stringent action would be taken against the conductors who were found collecting charges other than the ticket fare, he warned.
Ajay Kumar held a video conference in Khammam on Wednesday with district officials across the State to review the measures being taken to run RTC bus services in the view of the ongoing strike called by RTC JAC.
The Minister directed the RTC depot managers to display a list of fares to different destinations from their respective bus stations. He wanted the depot managers to give counselling to temporary staff regarding collection of authorised fares from the passengers.
The temporary drivers or conductors would be considered ineligible for future appointments if they are found committing any malpractice during their present daily wage service time, he pointed out.
He said about 50 to 60 per cent of bus services were being operated across the state. As Dasara holidays were coming to a close in another four days efforts should be made to increase the frequency of bus services to reach 80 per cent services for the convenience of the public.
Suggesting to set up helpline centres in all the district to address emergency situations and to receive public grievances, Ajay Kumar directed the District Collectors to depute accounting personnel from other departments to serve RTC offices and bus stations.
For the service and maintenance of buses qualified private mechanics should be hired, he noted. The Minister appreciated the RTC officials for their team effort in successfully running the bus services for the convenience of the people.
Steps should be taken to park the nigh-halt services near local police stations, the minister said.
Roads and Buildings Principal Secretary and TSRTC Managing Director Sunil Sharma who attended the video conference from Hyderabad said for the past five days buses were being run without any inconvenience to people and the same should be continued in the coming days.
He directed the RTC officials to allow bus pass holders to travel in the buses.
DGP M Mahender Reddy told the police officials to book FIRs against any person causing disruption to RTC bus services. Tight police security should provided at all bus stations and depots in coordination with the RTC and Transport Department officials, he said.
Transport Commissioner Sandeep Kumar Sultania also attended the video-conference from Hyderabad. Khammam District Collector RV Karnan, Additional DCP D Muralidhar and local RTC officials were present.
Over 80 pc buses ply in Karimnagar region
Karimnagar: The ongoing strike of TSRTC employees and workers unions was peaceful in Karimnagar region on fifth day on Wednesday.
As part of the strike, RTC workers staged protest demonstrations in bus stands across the region. Political leaders extended their support to agitating employees.
While a human chain was formed in Huzurabad, protest meetings were organised in Karimnagar, Jagitial, Korutla and other areas.
Karimangar MP Bandi Sanjay Kumar extended his support to employees in Karimangar, MLC T Jeevan Reddy and TDP state president L Ramana participated in the protest in Korutla and Jagitial respectively. Speaking on the occasion, MP assured to support to RTC employees’ strike.
On the other hand, RTC authorities have operated 80.69 percent buses in the region. A total of 539 buses including 336 RTC and 203 hired services were played in ten depot limits in Karimangar, Jagitial, Peddapalli and Rajanna-Sircilla. A total of 336 each of drivers and conductors have been deployed in duties.
Alternative transit facilities continue
Adilabad: Providing alternative transportation facility in place of buses belonging to TSRTC on Wednesday continued without a hitch in the district for the fifth day of ongoing the strike by workers of the corporation to prevent inconvenience to the general public. This indicated that the strike could not affect the services.
In Adilabad district, as many as 105 bus services including hired, contract carriages and vehicles belonging to educational institutions were operated on various routes helping passengers to reach their destinations. Of them, 22 belonged to TSRTC, 33 hired, 15 CC, 5 EIB and 30 maxi cabs. Over 100 buses were run in Mancherial district.
In Nirmal district, 50 buses of the corporation, 78 hired, 10 CC, 80 maxi cabs were pressed for avoiding convenience to the passengers in the wake of the indefinite strike. Some buses were escorted by policemen. Temporary drivers and conductors were deputed to operate the services.
Meanwhile, the employees belonging to TSRTC continued to stage their strike in front of the depots. They urged the government to address their long-pending issues.
69.28 pc buses ply in Warangal region
Warangal: The TSRTC Warangal region plied as many as 530 buses against the total of 765, on Wednesday. There are nine depots in the erstwhile Warangal district. The RTC Warangal region could run only 161 buses on Tuesday. It may be recalled here that on Monday, the third day of the strike, it plied 505 buses against the total of 942 from nine depots. The authorities managed to ply to 546 buses on Sunday. On Saturday, the first day of the strike, they could run only 432 buses.
Meanwhile, the RTC employees staged dharnas at several places in the erstwhile district. At Hanamkonda bus station, CPI (M) activists have staged a dharna demanding the State government to call the RTC JAC for the talks on the strike. The agitating activists have been arrested by the police.
Woes of passengers doubled on day after Dasara
Hyderabad: Public transport facilities in the State capital was crippled in the city on Wednesday with the TSRTC bus strike entering the fifth day.
The large number of people returning to Hyderabad from the districts after Dasara vacation faced difficulties with the meagre transport facilities here. Many had a tough time finding alternative transport facilities such as trains and private buses on Wednesday in the city to go homewards.
With not many RTC buses available to travel, the Secunderabad Railway Station and other stations were fully packed while the rush at Metro stations as such. The Mahatma Gandhi Bus Station and Jubilee Bus Station, the two biggest bus termnals in the city, wore a near deserted look on the day after Dasara.
Most of the 10,400 buses of the State-owned utility remained confined to the depots across the State while authorities managed to operate skeletal services with the help of temporary staff. The situation is likely to turn worse as more rush, especially students, are expected to return to the city as the educationals institutions will re-open on Thursday after the Bathukamma and Dasara holidays.
V Venkateshwarlu, Executive Director (Greater Hyderabad Zone), TSRTC, said they were operating around 1,000 buse services every day. The absence of experianced drivers was hampering the plans to operate more buses to tackle the festival rush, he said.
On the other hand, private buses and Setwin services plying in the city were seen charging double fares than the normal and passengers are complaining of exhorbitant charges by the private vehicles who are taking advantage of the ongoing strike.
‘Strike to safeguard RTC’
Stating that the stir would be intensified, TSRTC JAC convenor Ashwathama Reddy said the strike was not about their salaries and the main objective of their agitation was to safeguard the corporation and its future.