Covid-19 | Transport Department seizes 10 omni buses for flouting norms

Guest workers leaving for Bihar from Coimbatore found cramped in a omni bus late on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: SPL

The Transport Department has seized 10 omni buses in Coimbatore district in the last few days after their operators flouted COVID-19 safety norms and motor vehicle rules while transporting guest workers.

According to officials, the action was taken for transporting passengers more than the permitted limit, charging excessive fare and also for violating provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act.

J.K. Baskaran, Regional Transport Officer, Coimbatore central, said that the majority of the buses seized were found transporting more than 100 passengers whereas a maximum of 40 persons were allowed to travel per bus.

“We also found that they charged ₹5,000 to ₹6,000 from a passenger for trips to States like Bihar and Odisha. Earlier, the fare used to be ₹2,000 to ₹3,000,” he said.

On Saturday night, officials from the Regional Transport Office, Coimbatore central, seized an omni bus near the Government Polytechnic College for Women after it was found transporting 160 guest workers. The bus was about to leave the city for Bihar.

“Several passengers were lying down on the aisle. Others were found lying down on the berths. Two persons were found lying in a berth meant for one person. Other buses were arranged for them later,” Mr. Baskaran said.

On Sunday, Transport Department officials inspected buses at the Omni bus stand on Sathyamangalam Road and prevented operators from transporting more than the seating capacity. The bus stand was swelled by more than 500 guest workers.

After bus operators refused to admit passengers as instructed by the officials, many guest workers staged a road blockade demanding arrangements for travelling to their States ahead of the two-week lockdown. They stopped the protest after the police came. Transport officials said that no relaxation will be given with regard to the number of passengers.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 9:37:18 PM |

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