The State Transport Authority (STA) imposed a fine of Rs 24,000 against the driver of a luxury bus for ferrying interstate passengers from Chandigarh to different parts in Uttar Pradesh. The deluxe bus was impounded near Mani Majra. The STA had received the information about three buses but found only one at the location. The bus was later taken to PS Mani Majra.
The owners of the bus subsequently submitted the fine amount and got the bus released. The interstate movement of passengers through transport buses, including private and government, from Chandigarh has been suspended till September 16. The STA has impounded and challaned at least five private commercial vehicles for ferrying passengers from Chandigarh to other states, in the last one week. Sources said the passengers were sitting in the buses without following social distancing norms, without getting hands sanitised and most of them had not worn face masks.
STA Inspector Jiya Lal Singh said, “Although interstate movement is banned in Chandigarh, the private transporters are taking advantage of this situation. They are charging high prices from people who are eager to go to their respective states. As per our information, the vehicles are parked within Chandigarh, but they picked passengers from neighboring areas including Panchkula and Mohali. In Mani Majra, a deluxe bus bearing a UP registration number was found parked near Mansa Devi Road, with passengers entering it. We inquired and found that the driver and the bus operator had no permits. The total fine for all the offences amounted to Rs 24,000. We are raiding locations about which we are getting information.”
Sources said a team of STA staff members received information about a bus parked in Dhanas, but found nothing. STA Secretary Harjeet Singh Sandhu said, “Our staff members are on checking spree. No transporter is allowed to take passengers from Chandigarh to the other states.”
Meanwhile, the Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) has decided to resume its interstate bus operations in Punjab and Haryana from September 16. Sources said, “It is yet to be clear if private transporters will also be allowed to ferry passengers out of Chandigarh after September 16 or not. The administration is yet to decide about the SOP for big transporters.”
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