P. Sujatha Varma

Exclusive bus service on option

Not less than 60 students for bus facility to be availed by educational institutionsMonthly transportation fee will be Rs. 325 per head for a distance not exceeding 16 kmThere is a good response to it in Machilipatnam, Avanigadda, Nuzvid and Vuyyur

VIJAYAWADA: To rescue students from the rickety ways of auto-rickshaw drivers and unreliable school buses, which frequently break down leaving the hapless children in the lurch, the APSRTC, Krishna region, has come up with a special package. The RTC proposes to run an exclusive service for a school or a college that opts for this package. The institution must ensure that a minimum of 60 students avail themselves of the service for a monthly transportation fee of Rs. 325 per head (for a distance not exceeding 16 km). The charges will increase, as the distance increases. "This package benefits the institutions as well as the corporation. Since safety is the key factor, many schools and colleges are opting for the facility," says RTC's regional manager M. Seetapathi.

General pass

Besides issuing bus passes to beneficiaries in different categories, the RTC is offering this package, which has other advantages too. A pass given to students availing themselves of the facility will also serve as a general pass. Nimra engineering college at Ibrahimpatnam and Kakatiya Public School have opted for the special service.

The package has been extended to other institutions across the district. "There is a good response to it in Machilipatnam, Avanigadda, Nuzvid and Vuyyur. The agreements with local educational institutions at these places are in the final stages," says Mr. Seetapathi.

Elsewhere in the district, the RTC proposed to charge a monthly fee of Rs. 400 from each student. Unlike in the city, the pass issued for the exclusive service will not be treated as a general pass, he clarifies.

A similar facility for factory workers is likely to be extended after a final decision on the issue. Citing the case of Priya Pickles, he says the company has availed itself of the facility keeping in view the safety of its women workers who come to the factory from distant villages and travel home during late hours. Mr. Seetapathi says RTC is trying to lure more companies, which can opt for the facility.