Coimbatore

Omni buses see poor patronage following night curfew

Only a few omni buses were operated on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: SIVA SARAVANAN S

With the State government imposing night curfew to curb the spread of COVID-19, private omni buses that usually operate in the night have been seeing poor patronage during the day.

At the Omni Bus Terminus in Gandhipuram within Coimbatore Corporation limits, scores of omni buses remained parked and only a few were operated on Wednesday. “We had only one service to Tiruchendur on Tuesday before the night curfew came to force,” R. Baskaran, president of Tamil Nadu Omni Bus Owners Association (Coimbatore) and an omni bus operator with 35 buses, said on Wednesday.

Many of the omni buses were cancelled at the last minute on Monday owing to poor occupancy, he added.

While the services are available to locations such as Chennai, Puducherry, Nagercoil, Madurai and Bengaluru, most of the passengers do not prefer travelling in the day in omni buses, according to Mr. Baskaran.

Even in the omni buses that were operated, only about 10 to 15 seats were getting filled leading to financial loss to the bus operators. “Booking of at least 25 seats in a bus would help [the operators] to break even without facing any losses,” he said.

A Regional Transport Officer from the city said that only about a dozen omni buses were operated on Tuesday from the Gandhipuram Omni Bus Terminus, while around 100 omni buses are usually operated by various operators.

Regarding the COVID-19 safety protocol, the Transport Department has been inspecting all the omni buses whether they disinfect the vehicles after every trip, ensure wearing of masks and provide hand sanitisers to all the passengers, he said.

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Printable version | May 9, 2021 2:19:47 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Coimbatore/omni-buses-see-poor-patronage-following-night-curfew/article34379843.ece

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