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Crackdown continues as buses rejoin routes

  • New company gets Sinamangal-NAC route permit
- CHANDAN KUMAR MANDAL, Kathmandu

May 6, 2018-Public vehicle operators who went on a strike on Friday resumed services across the country on Saturday, bowing to pressure from the public and the government which initiated a number of measures against the transport syndicates.

The government is said to be working to foil such disruptions in public mobility, which is an essential service, in view of an indefinite strike that the transport entrepreneurs have announced from May 10 against the measures to end their monopoly.

According to Tulasi Ram Aryal, spokesperson for the Department of Transport Management (DoTM), the government is prepared to deal with any sort of disturbance in transportation. The government is expected to act tougher if such a strike occurs again. “As already said, we will carry on with scrapping route permits of vehicles not providing services,” said Aryal. The government has opened routes for permission to any eligible bus operator.

The DoTM on Friday revoked the permits issued to 26 micro-buses to ply the Sinamangal-NAC route after the monitoring team found that they had joined the protest by halting their services.Immediately after scrapping the route permits of defiant micro-buses, the Transport Department permitted new vehicles to ply the routes. Digo Public Transport Pvt Ltd has got the permit to run 17 new buses, said Aryal. As they currently have no vehicles, they will procure new buses by the end of next week, according to him.

The DoTM is said to be collecting details of vehicles that were garaged on Friday for action. The department has said stringent actions like revoking route permits permanently will be taken against defiant transport entrepreneurs.

While the government entrusts private companies with operating buses for public commute, it also plans to use buses belonging to different state and security agencies. For this, arrangements like details of buses and manpower required for operating them have been made.

“We have prepared a list of government vehicles on standby position to serve in the event of any obstacle in future,” said Aryal. He suggested that the government could also take buses away from committees not serving the people. “As the last resort, the government will take out their buses from garage for operation.

We have gathered the required manpower--helpers and drivers.”Following the government’s harsh action, including arrest of transport committee leaders, bus operators united under committees and associations to protect their syndicates and cartels ended their protest on Saturday. Issuing a statement, the Federation of Nepalese National Transport Entrepreneurs, which led the protest, called on the entrepreneurs to resume regular services. The FNNTE has requested the government to find an amicable solution to the ongoing crisis through dialogue. It also presses for release of transport committee members rounded up from different parts of the country while enforcing the strike.

Published: 06-05-2018 07:47

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