The protests against the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh have affected the travel plans of Tirupati-bound Chennaiites. With State Express Transport Corporation (SETC) buses cancelled, pilgrims are looking to other ways of getting to the hill shrine.
According to sources, over 3,000 persons go to Tirupati from the city every day. Most of them travel by bus and some, by train. Ever since the Telangana protests began, many buses have been cancelled to avoid inconvenience to travellers. On Sunday, a board outside the Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation in Chennai Moffusil Bus Terminus (CMBT) said that buses to Ananthapur, Cuddapah, Kurnool and Tirupati had been cancelled.
Sources said that nearly 40 buses to the temple town were cancelled. According to Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation (TTDC) sources, buses will be operated to Tirupati via Uthukotai on Monday.
“My in-laws recently came down to Chennai from Delhi and I had planned to take them to Tirupati. But, the cancellation of buses delayed my plan. Finally, we left by train on Sunday,” said S. Varun Narayanasamy, a resident of Arumbakkam.
Meanwhile, southern railway sources said that there has not been a major increase in passenger traffic to Tirupati by train. “There are three trains to the pilgrim centre every day,” said the official.