Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated bus service for greater Berhampur from Bhubaneswar online on Wednesday through video conferencing.
This inauguration ceremony took place at 6 p.m. Seven of the buses to be used for the bus service were formally flagged off at Chatrapur, the district headquarters of Ganjam district, by Mr. Patnaik. In his address to the people who had gathered for the inauguration ceremony, Mr. Patnaik said the long-awaited dream of city bus service for Berhampur and urban centres on its periphery had become a reality. According to him it would benefit people of all walks of life of Ganjam district.
Out of the seven newly inaugurated city buses, one travelled to Gopalpur, another to Hinjli via Berhampur and five buses travelled to Berhampur city. In one of the buses that travelled to Berhampur, senior district officials who are part of the Ganjam Urban Transport Services Limited (GUTSL), made the inaugural journey to the city. They included commissioner of Berhampur Municipal Corporation (BMC) Ajit Mishra, who happens to be the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GUTSL, secretary of Berhampur Development Authority (BDA). The buses were greeted by Sub-Collector and tahsildar near BDA office.
Speaking to The Hindu, the CEO of the bus service Mr. Mishra said, very soon all the proposed 32 buses meant for this project would start running on different routes. For it the GUTSL has entered into an agreement with the Odisha State Road Transport Corporation (OSRTC). The OSRTC would operate these buses. It may be noted that city bus project for Berhampur was to be taken up under Private Public Participation (PPP) mode. But as no private operator turned up to take up the project even after floating tender two times, government decided to hand over charge of its operation to the OSRTC for one year.