Irked by the plying of illegal autos and inaction of the Municipal Corporation of Jalandhar (MCJ) in banning the autos, the city bus operating company has been forced to stop its services from July 30.
To provide transport facility to cover local routes in the city, a fleet of 15 buses was inaugurated by chief minister Parkash Singh Badal in 2008. All the buses were deployed on the same route from Jalandhar to Kartar to provide services every ten minutes.
The city bus service contractor submitted a letter to the chairman of city bus service cum deputy commissioner (DC) Kamal Kishore Yadav and MCJ commissioner Manpreet Singh Chattwal on Wednesday saying they would stop the service as mushrooming of illegal and unregistered autos had not been controlled.
The contractor had requested the authorities many times to keep a check on the illegal autos. He had submitted a letter to the DC on July 11 saying services would be stopped from July 15 if the authorities did not rein in illegal autos in the city.
City Bus Jalandhar manager Praveen Olivera said the DC had assured them the authorities would take strict action and a meeting in this regard was also held but to no avail.
"More than 15,000 autos are plying on city roads out of which more than 12,000 are running illegally," he said.
Olivera said they had decided to stop the service rather than face huge losses.
Meanwhile, the city buses are running without earning profit. Excluding the amount of diesel, a single bus is running only on a profit of `1,000 from which the contractor has to manage the salaries of the driver and the conductor as well as maintenance expenses of the bus. The contractor also has to pay a road tax of around `1 lakh per month for all the buses.
As per the agreement, these buses were valid for only five years but since no new buses were purchased by MCJ, authorities continued the service through the same buses.
The buses are in a miserable condition without proper seats and cleanliness. Moreover, they produce huge amount of smoke which pollutes the environment.