Transport Minister Botcha Satyanarayana has stated that it would not be possible for Government to provide jobs to eligible dependents of those who were killed in a recent bus accident at Palem in Mahbubnagar district. Responding to questions at a press conference here on Saturday, he said the decision was in the hands of Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy.
“If it could be done, he would have said so. As things stand, we have already paid ex-gratia of Rs. 1 lakh to each of the families of the 45 victims,” he said.
When his attention was drawn to the agitation by the victims’ kin, he said they wanted Rs. 25 lakh and more and that it would be taken care by the insurance companies.
As for action against the bus owner, he said the Transport and Police Departments were doing their job. While the former was looking into violation of rules, the latter was probing for negligence.
Meanwhile, the Chief Minister told reporters that it was not possible for the Government to concede the demands being put forth by the families of the victims. “Thousands of people die in road accidents. We try to help them. Whatever has to come from the insurance companies, we will facilitate that,” he said.
He said people were taking recourse to alternative mode of travel. The Government did not have the capacity to operate buses on all routes. Across the country, the ratio of Government buses to private operators was 60:40. “In AP we have not yet allowed such high share to private bus operators,” he said.