BENGALURU: Private buses operating within and outside the state will not be allowed to enter the city. They will instead have to drop passengers at bus terminals on the outskirts. This decision, taking during a recent meeting of the State Transport Authority (STA), is aimed at reducing pollution and traffic congestion in Bengaluru.
The transport department will issue a government order soon. Confirming this, a senior official of the department told Express, “The notices were served to private bus operators a week before the STA meeting. The advocates representing the operators were present at the meeting.”
As per the new decision, private buses will pick up and drop passengers on the outskirts. For example, buses from Mangaluru will have to drop passengers at Peenya KSRTC bus terminal, while those coming from Mysuru will have to make Kengeri satellite bus terminal their last stop. This was decided after a report was submitted by additional commissioner (Traffic) R Hitendra to the transport department. “Recently, we received a report on the increasing pollution levels in the city and the role of private buses in that. Hence this measure,” the official said.
Though the private bus operators have not yet agreed to this and are demanding that the ban be restricted to new operators, the department is firm on its decision. “There is no question of stepping back. It’s not just pollution. We are receiving complaints about traffic congestion created by them. Their question is, who will pick up and drop passengers? When there are KSRTC and BMTC bus terminals on all routes, it will not be a problem for commuters. Now, even Metro service is available on many routes,” the source said.
This rule will not apply for contract carriages as the permits are not issued from Regional Transport Authority or STA. There are 260 state and interstate operators who have permits from RTA and STA.
According to sources, it has also been decided to conduct a survey in association with the police to identify good and bad roads, and shortest routes possible for private buses to reach the destination.