BENGALURU: Overcrowding, a faulty fuse and technical snag were responsible for the uncomfortable rides experienced by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in two Volvo buses on Wednesday during his city tour. An inquiry is being conducted by mechanical department of BMTC and the report is expected to be ready in a few days.
On Wednesday, Siddaramaiah with his Cabinet members and party colleagues travelled on two hop on-hop off buses to visit rain-affected areas but had to curtail the visit due to techincal snags.
According to a top BMTC official, the first bus Siddaramaiah took from his home office Krishna had been running on city roads for the past three years. It generally runs between the airport and Kempegowda bus station and had clocked nearly 3 lakh kilometers.
“The Volvo is 35-seater but ministers and top officials from civic and transport departments hopped into the bus. Overcrowding prevented the air conditioner from creating right cooling,” he said. The official said on Thursday, BMTC and Volvo employees checked the bus condition at Kempegowda bus depot, revealing that a fuse had failed. “The AC has four fuses, one of which had malfunctioned,” he added.
BMTC Chairman M Nagaraju said BBMP was keen on a bus which had high seats so that the CM could see through the glass during his rounds. “The two other buses accompanying the CM’s vehicle were new Volvos in which the floor was low,” he said.
As the AC malfunctioned, a decision to change it was taken at Shantinagar bus depot. Noorula, a BMTC driver who has always driven the CM during his city tours, rushed to get another bus. “He picked up one of the buses that had been left at the depot for repair. Soon, the fan belt on the pulley attached to the rear engine slipped when the brakes were applied at Ramamurthy Nagar bringing the second bus to a halt,” an official said. This forced the CM to cancel his visit to Kalkare and use his car instead.
Valu Rathod, executive engineer, Transport department, BBMP, said whenever the CM goes on city tours, buses were arranged by his team. “We ask BMTC to provide us AC buses with experienced drivers. We send a request letter and the same was done before this tour. We don’t know what the problem was this time,” he said.Nagaraju on Thursday said, “If anyone is found guilty, we will take action against the official. I have asked the BMTC MD to submit a report in two days.”