Officials of the Transport Department, who launched a crackdown against the use of music players and blaring horns in town buses in the city on Wednesday, returned empty handed after conducting “surprise checks” for nearly two hours to seize audio systems and horns from the vehicles at the Chathram Bus Stand.

None of the 173 buses checked by the officials had audio systems, even though there have been complaints from consumer organisations and the general public about film songs being played in buses.

The checks were conducted by teams of Motor Vehicles Inspectors from Tiruchi and Srirangam Regional Transport Offices. According to a MV Inspector, the checks were conducted under the orders of Jayashree Muralidharan, Collector, who also heads the District Traffic Advisory Council, apparently after receiving some complaints in this regard.

An official conceded that it was possible that the crews of the buses had removed the systems anticipating the checks.

“We have already warned the bus operators and crew against using audio systems in the buses. There have been complaints of obscene songs being played in the buses. The checks will continue,” he said.

Nonetheless, the checks resulted in the removal of air horns that has also been barred in the city, from as many as 114 buses, including 12 State Transport Corporation vehicles.

Check reports have been issued for 15 vehicles for this and other offences and will be forwarded to the Collector for imposing penalty.

Meanwhile, D.R. Dharmaraj, secretary, Tiruchi Private Bus Operators’ Association, said private operators had agreed to remove audio systems from the town buses and had done so already. “There may have been some complaints of audio systems being used in a few buses and hence the action. We are completely in agreement with the district administration and complied with the directives to remove audio systems and air horns and fix speed control governors,” he said.