A batch of 300 private bus drivers ferrying essential workers from Vasai, Virar and Nallasopara areas of Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) to Mumbai city have alleged harassment at the hand of officials from Regional Transport Office (RTO).
A letter issued by Mumbai Bus Malak Sanghatna (MBMS), an association of private bus operators, stated while the central government has extended the validity of all vehicle-related papers until September this year, RTO officials continue to stop vehicles on Godhbunder Road to check papers. “The legality of a vehicle can be accessed through the Vahan Portal app and there is no real need for the buses to be stopped,” MBMS general secretary Harsh Kotak said. He added the checks had been targeted only at private bus operators for the past 12 days which inconvenienced the passengers, who are mostly essential workers.
Around 300 private vehicles ferry thousands of passengers from the adjoining areas into Mumbai each day. When contacted, Transport Commissioner Shekar Channe said, “RTOs are doing routine checking. If buses have their documents in place, even if they are not updated, they should not have a problem with these checks.”
The group of drivers are likely to meet Channe and state Transport Minister Anil Parab to raise their problems.
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