BENGALURU: The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) has kicked off free bus services for flood-hit people from Chennai to Bengaluru after every eight hours.
“As incessant rains in costal Tamil Nadu have hit the people financially and many of them don’t have money left with them. We have started free bus services for the flood-hit people from Chennai to Bengaluru after every eight hours since Friday night,” said KSRTC Managing Director Rajendra Kataria divulging details of the service.
“Besides, we will transport relief materials to flood-hit Chennai free of cost. We are doing our bit to provide some relief to the flood-affected people as part of our social responsibility,” said Kataria.
“Earlier, we used to ply nearly 40 buses between the two cities, which was affected by floods in Chennai and got reduced to just 20. Chennai-bound passengers also reduced dramatically. However, there is a sudden spurt in demand of more buses from Chennai, as many people want to come to this side (in search of a safe haven). Hence, for the past few days, we have been plying 55 buses between the two cities, which are ferrying 5,000-6,000 people everyday,” he elaborated.
“Even as most of the buses are running empty from one side (from Bengaluru) and have incurred a loss of Rs. 50-60 lakh so far to the KSRTC, we never charged extra fare from the travellers. Normally, we charge extra fare when we ply additional buses. Apart from these, following a request from the Maharashtra Government to evacuate 150 students from the state stuck in IIT Chennai, we have arranged three buses for them as well,” Kataria added.
In the meantime, normalcy is returning in most parts of Chennai at a faster pace with the sky remaining clear, except for occasional showers at isolated locations.
Telecommunication and train services have been partially restored, besides many roads have also become fairly motorable.
In Chennai, the availability of essential items like milk, candles and petroleum and diesel remain an area of concern.
Naval vessels INS Shakti and INS Shyadhri arrived Chennai port with fresh loads of relief materials.
After conducting an aerial survey of flood-hit areas, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a financial relief of Rs. 1,000 crore for flood-hit Tamil Nadu.