Staff Reporter

Action against Koraput RTO demanded

BERHAMPUR: Private buses stopped plying in Nabarangpur, Koraput and Malkangiri districts from Wednesday.

These buses were off the road as a part of protest by the ‘Zonal Private Bus Owners’ Federation (ZPBW)’, an organisation of private bus owners of these three districts. According to s per the convener of ZPBW Durga Tripathy they would continue their protest agitation till the State government intervened and fulfilled their demands.

The strike by private bus owners had its impact in Koraput, Malkangiri and Nabarangpur districts. The passenger buses of Orissa State Road Transport Corporation (OSRTC) were not sufficient to cater to the large number of passengers. Most of them were too overcrowded.

The private owners of this region have started their indefinite agitation for three demands. Their major demand is action against the Regional Transport Officer (RTO) of Nabarangpur. The bus owners allege that the RTO was corrupt and demanding regular bribe from the bus owners. Mr Tripathy said the bus owners of Nabarangpur had approached the local collector and police about their allegation. But no action had been taken against the ‘erring corrupt’ official of the transport department.

The members of the ZPBW are also demanding that temporary permits should be issued to them in their districts. Now they have to approach headquarters of the transport department in Cuttack for temporary permits. Two months back the private bus owners of the area had started strike over the same issue. As per the ZPBW the State Transport Minister had promised to fulfil this demand within two months. But it has not been done till now.

The ZPBW is also opposed to the increased use of ‘Tata Magic’ and ‘Maruti Omni’ vehicles as passenger vehicles. Use of these vehicles as passenger carriers instead of contract carriers is affecting their income, they say.