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West Bengal aims to make ride comfortable for long-distance bus travellers

West Bengal aims to make long-distance road travel within the State more passenger-friendly by introducing facilities normally not expected in government-run buses.

Starting Thursday, on a trial basis, the West Bengal Transport Corporation (WBTC) will provide passengers travelling in its Volvo AC buses on the Kolkata-Bolpur-Suri route (Santiniketan is located in Bolpur) with a free 500ml bottle of drinking water. Additional bottles will be chargeable.

“Moreover, a small newspaper room would be provided. Ten newspapers – in Bengali, Hindi and English – will be kept in each bus for the benefit of passengers during their journey,” said WBTC Managing Director Rajanvir Singh Kapur.

“There will also be a small food corner, stocked with biscuits, chips and other snacks. Passengers can buy these instead of waiting for the bus to stop. The whole idea is to make the journey a little comfortable,” Mr. Kapur said.

These facilities would be eventually extended to Volvo AC buses running on all long routes. The WBTC runs many long routes to tourist destinations such as Bolpur, Digha, Mayapur and Bakkhali.

Commuter-friendly measures

“There are also plans to provide free WiFi in all long-route buses, starting with AC Volvos,” he said.

Mr. Kapur, ever since he took charge as the WBTC MD in January 2020, has initiated a string of commuter-friendly measures. Early this year, the WBTC launched a daily travel pass entitling passengers to unlimited travel in Kolkata’s buses, trams and ferries. The Travelpass costs ₹100 and benefits particularly those wanting to explore different corners of Kolkata and also get a taste of tram travel and a ride across the River Hooghly. He is also the brain behind Tram World Kolkata, a cultural centre planned in the still-functional Gariahat tram depot where, as of now, 12 trams are on display, their interiors exhibiting pictures from the bygone era.

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Printable version | Sep 22, 2021 8:21:30 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/west-bengal-aims-to-make-ride-comfortable-for-long-distance-bus-travellers/article35728997.ece

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