BHUBANESWAR: In a major relief to the daily commuters, All Odisha Bus Owners’ Association called of their strike in the evening following an assurance by the Government to meet their demands.
The private operators’ association, comprising 17,000 buses that are run in the State, had called the strike demanding a clear-cut policy on City Bus Service which, they allege encroaches the territory of private operators.
Transport Minister Nrusingh Chandra Sahoo and Urban Development Minister Niranjan Pujari held a meeting with the association members at Secretariat here over its 11-point charter of demands. After the meeting, the association members told mediapersons in the evening that the State Government had agreed to their demands, including limiting the operations of City buses.
“The inter-district operation of City buses is affecting our business. The Government has agreed to limit the operations of City buses as per the defined jurisdiction,” said Loknath Pani, treasurer of the association.“The Government will form a committee, which will also have members of our association, and they will examine the operation of City buses. The committee will also examine if new City buses have been inducted in the fleet and if those are operating within the prescribed jurisdiction or not,” Pani said.
The committee will submit a report in this regard to the Government within three months. Besides the operation of City buses, the association informed this paper that the Government has also agreed to its demand of reducing the motor vehicle tax amount, allowing change of transfer permit, among others.
Association president Prakash Mishra, general secretary Debendranath Sahoo, spokesperson Debashish Nayak and others, addressed mediapersons. Earlier in the day, except school and City buses, all other passenger buses remained off the road from 6 am as per the strike decision called by the association.