THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) resumed local services on Wednesday, 56 days after the lockdown was imposed on March 25. The services started at 7 am and will stop by 7 pm in compliance with lockdown guidelines.
KSRTC planned to operate 1850 inter-district services in the state but one-third of them had to be held back due to low patronage. Only a few satellite towns attracted passengers. However, crowding in some buses was a cause for concern as the crew could not ensure social distancing mandated by lockdown guidelines. The new increased bus fare with a minimum charge of Rs 12 came into force from Wednesday.
Thiruvananthapuram district operated the maximum services and office-goers constituted most of the passengers. Passengers and crew wore masks as mandated. Entry into the buses was restricted through the back door and exit through the front door.
Meanwhile, representatives of private bus operators met Transport Minister AK Saseendran and expressed their willingness to start services. Earlier, they took a wait and watch policy to get insurance benefits and assess the level of patronage.