Vehicles without permit face travel prohibition

- NAGENDRA ADHIKARI, KAVRE

Aug 19, 2016-

In the wake of a terrible bus accident that killed 27 people in Kavre, police have heightened the scrutiny of buses plying rural roads.

The local administration has been inspecting route permits of the buses operating on rural highways. The District Administration Office said vehicles that ply the roads often get into accidents, denying passengers insurance pay in case of casualties.

Suk Dev Khanal, chief of the District Traffic Police, said 62 vehicles plying the BP Highway route were sent back from Bhakunde on Thursday after they failed to present the route permits.

Some of the stranded passengers found seats in private vehicles but many had to return to Kathmandu. Many of these vehicles are misusing their permits issued for blacktopped roads to ply on fair-weather roads. For instance, Araniko Yatayat has a route permit for up to Chautara but its buses have been traversing to various rural parts of the Koshi zone. Also, buses run by Himal Tarai Yatayat that go up to Okhaldhunga, Solukhumbu and Udayapur districts have their permits only up to Bhakunde. For these vehicles, the district administration issues temporary permits based on the demand from the local communities.

The local authorities heightened their inspection after Home Minister Bimalendra Nidhi on Tuesday directed officials to take stringent measures against overloading in vehicles and the anomalies related to the route permit. 

Transport entrepreneurs, however, said barring vehicles is not an effective solution.

 “Vehicular movement in rural areas will come to a grinding halt if the authorities act this way,” said Rajesh Kumar Shrestha, chairman of the Helambu Yatayat Sewa Samiti. 

“There is no route permit for rural road networks. Instead, the government should upgrade roads and issue permits,” he added.Transport officials also took people off jam-packed vehicles in Kavre. Passengers of 84 vehicles bore the brunt of the police action as they could not reach their destinations.

“The authorities should press transport entrepreneurs to run more vehicles,” said Ratna BK, who had to get off the bus headed for Chautara. “Authorities take action only after big accidents and such measure has never worked so far.”

Published: 19-08-2016 13:49

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