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...But where are the conductors?

After battling with shortage of drivers for a long time, the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) is now falling short of conductors for its expanding fleet, reports Atul Mathur.

delhi Updated: Mar 09, 2009 03:13 IST
Atul Mathur

After battling with shortage of drivers for a long time, the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) is now falling short of conductors for its expanding fleet.

DTC sources said the department does not have staff for its complete fleet and some buses remain parked in depots every day due to paucity of trained conductors.

For its 3,932 buses, the DTC currently has about 9,900 conductors on its rolls. Interestingly, over 1,300 of these conductors are currently reporting on other duties at various depots, workshops and DTC headquarters to meet the shortage of administrative staff.

Another 250 conductors are working in the security department while 200-odd conductors are deployed with the state transport authority. According to present staffing norms, there should be 2.5 conductors for each bus.

“The situation is expected to worsen from April onwards when we start getting almost 100 new buses every month. There are no conductors to be posted on those buses,” a senior DTC official said on condition of anonymity.

For about 6,900 buses by 2010, the DTC would require more than 17,000 conductors. To overcome the crisis, senior officials said, the DTC has now floated an overtime scheme for conductors. Trained staff volunteering to do overtime will be given Rs 2 for each kilometre they cover beyond regular duty hours.

Though the DTC has asked them to report back to their respective depots to get posting on buses, sources said very few of them have responded.

“Apart from calling back our staff and launching voluntary scheme, we are also contemplating to outsource it to a private agency,” a senior DTC official said.