The Delhi traffic police have begun to crack down on unauthorised buses plying on city roads, especially blueline buses with expired permits.
This has given a huge breather to the loss-making Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC). Thanks to the traffic police, DTC's earnings have suddenly shot up.
According to traffic police, hundreds of bluelines and other buses have been plying on the city's roads since months. And it has become a regular phenomenon ever since the blueline buses were sent off roads.
The Mehrauli circle, one of the biggest circles which operates 250 buses and caters to 2.5 lakh commuters daily, is the most notorious area. A few months ago, the DTC had sought help from traffic police to curb the menace.
"Coming down heavily on the illegal buses plying on Mehrauli circle, we have prosecuted a total of 106 buses, mostly bluelines, for permit violation since January. The court has slapped severe penalties on them, ranging from Rs2000 to Rs11,000," said Satyendra Garg, joint commissioner of police (traffic).
He said the Mehrauli circle regularly saw intimidation and harassment of DTC bus drivers and conductors by private operators. "Now, the situation has come under control," said Garg.
A senior officer of DTC said: "Earlier DTC drivers and conductors were scared to ply buses in areas like Bhati Mines and Aya Nagar. But now morale of DTC staff is very high. Also the earning of DTC especially from Lado Sarai terminal has increased significantly, from Rs60,000 to Rs95,000."
DTC has sent a letter of appreciation to traffic department a week ago.
But only a few months ago, it had claimed that it was incurring a loss of Rs1.5 lakh a day due to police personnel travelling on the buses without tickets.