More than 80 low-floor air-conditioned (AC) buses are lying unused in a depot here at a time when the city residents are badly in need of better public transport. The buses are lying unsused for over one-and-half-year. The employees of Haryana roadways claimed that the transport department is failing on maintenance account miserably thanks to unskilled mechanics and non-availably of original spare parts.
Previous Congress government in Haryana had sanctioned 116 low floor AC buses for inter and intra-city with an aim to ensure last mile connectivity in the city. “Since those are advance buses and we do not have trained automobile mechanics and after technical errors appear on roads, buses are placed in junkyard ,” district president of Haryana Roadways Vinod Sharma told PTI.
“Our senior officers also failed to make policies to apply pressure on the company for providing separate maintenance wing. As a result, the department is dependent on ITI trainees and apprentice holders for repairing job,” he said.
He claimed that out of the total buses plying on existing 13 routes in the city, only 25 to 30 buses are in working condition.
Non availability of buses has forced the department to curtail the frequency of buses on different routes. Earlier, buses were available in an interval of 5 minutes and now it takes 15 to 20 minutes. While, department has reduced buses on routes such as Karol Bagh, Badarpur and Sarai Kale Khan in Delhi with not more than two buses.
Even, the longer distance Volvo buses, connecting Shimla, Moga, Ludhiana, Patiala, Aligarh, Dehradun are cancelled while one bus each is available for Jaipur, Balaji, Katra, Nanital and Haridwar.
A senior officer of Road and Transport Department said on the condition of anonymity that matters are pending before the state road transport ministry which has not given nod on maintenance account as well as purchasing of new fleet of buses.