TNSTC buses slashed from Alangulam to Tirunelveli, passengers forced to travel on footboard

The reduction of buses operated by TNSTC and the slashing of trips on routes between Tenkasi and Tirunelveli have thrown public commuting into disarray.

Published: 01st November 2022 08:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st November 2022 08:09 AM   |  A+A-

Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC)

Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC)

Express News Service

TENKASI/TIRUNELVELI:  The reduction of buses operated by TNSTC and the slashing of trips on routes between Tenkasi and Tirunelveli have thrown public commuting into disarray.

Hundreds of students, patients, and employees from Alangulam are forced to take the overcrowded buses and hang on its footboard to reach their destination. A recent protest by students at the Alangulam bus stand seeking more bus services between Tenkasi-Tirunelveli and Tirunelveli-Surandai did not yield any results.

"Till 2019, there was a sufficient number of buses for transportation. However, the Tirunelveli  TNSTC began reducing the number of buses and the count of trips between the two districts after the pandemic. As many as 500 people would be waiting at the bus stand for Tirunelveli-bound buses in the morning, but there would hardly be four buses to transport them. The same situation persists in Tirunelveli in the evening when we are looking to return home," said R Selvi, a government college student, one among the many footboard travellers. Another student, M Priya, said the buses bound for Tirunelveli are already full when it reaches the Alangulam bus stand, causing them to stand on the footboard. "The TNSTC rarely operates direct buses from Alangulam to Tirunelveli," she added.

A 73-year-old renal patient, Muthukrishnan*, said the lack of enough buses to Tirunelveli is an everyday affair and he has to splurge around `900 to reach the Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital (TvMCH) by auto rickshaw. "I cannot travel in overcrowded buses and have to replace my urinary catheter once every 21-days. For that, I have to be in the hospital before the OP time ends," he added. Recently, TNSTC cancelled bus 43L from Alangulam to Tirunelveli via Nallur.  

When contacted by TNIE, Solomon, Deputy Manager (Commercial) of Tirunelveli TNSTC, said the count of trips between Tenkasi and Tirunelveli was reduced after the start of the road-widening project. "We are issuing memos to drivers regarding the matter. Also, we are trying to operate more direct buses from Alangulam to Tirunelveli and vice-versa to avoid overcrowding. At present, 58 buses between Tenkasi and Tirunelveli are going on 174 trips daily, and 16 buses are plying in 42 trips between Tirunelveli and Surandai," he added.

Distance between Tirunelveli and Tenkasi - around 60 km
Distance between Tirunelveli and Alangulam - around 35 km
Distance between Tirunelveli and Surandai - around 55 km



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