Low floor buses of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) plying in the capital will start their services from the proposed bus terminal at Eenchakkal from August 20, Minister for Transport V.S. Sivakumar has said.

Speaking after commissioning a comfort station and waiting area constructed under the “Safe Woman, Safe Travel' concept at the city bus depot at East Fort here on Tuesday, the Minister said though the low floor buses would start services from Eenchakkal, it would touch East Fort for the benefit of commuters.

The Minister said the decision would help reduce the traffic congestion in front of the bus stand at East Fort to a certain extent. The government would soon commence long distance bus services of the KSRTC from Eenchakkal to reduce the congestion at Thampanoor and along arterial roads.

Mr. Sivakumar said the ‘Safe Woman, Safe Travel' concept taken up under the gender sensitisation scheme would be extended to all KSRTC depots in the State. Comfort stations and waiting area would also be constructed. The announcement to this effect would be made by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy as part of the action programme of the United Democratic Front (UDF) government for the next one year.

The idea was to ensure safe travel and comfort for women commuters. The Minister said KSRTC bus stations were not women-friendly and that was one of the reasons why women commuters were reluctant to come to bus stations after dusk.

As many as 11 toilets and bathrooms had been constructed in the comfort station and waiting area here. Mr. Sivakumar said the government would set up a police aid post adjacent to it and would post women police officers there. An entrance would also be created from the main road so that women commuters could enter from the main road itself.

The Transport Minister said the traffic problem at East Fort on account of the parking of KSRTC buses in front of the bus station was a serious one. It often hampered the movement of other motorists and pedestrians. The government was working on a scheme for the development of East Fort and for overcoming the traffic and flooding problems there, he said.

Mayor K. Chandrika presided over the function. Chairman and Managing Director of KSRTC Alexander K. Luke and others participated.