HT Impact: Capt Amarinder seeks report on shortage of tyres for Punjab roadways buses
The HT article highlighted a shortage of tyres and spare parts in 18 depots across the state. It was also reported that hundreds of buses were plying on the roads with worn-out tyres and outdated spare parts.punjab Updated: Oct 28, 2017 17:04 IST
Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh has ordered the transport department to file a report on the short supply of tyres for Punjab Roadways buses.
Taking to the microblogging site, Twitter, Captain acknowledged a report published by HT on October 26, ‘Punjab Roadways buses plying on worn-out tyres, old parts’. The CM’s reaction came rather quickly, a day after the news article was published, and he has directed the ‘concerned department to file a report on the matter’.
I’ve taken note of this, asked concerned dept for a report. Won’t allow people to be put at risk will ensure action. https://t.co/zTypuc0vrq— Capt.Amarinder Singh (@capt_amarinder) October 27, 2017
He tweeted, “I have taken note of this, asked concerned dept for a report. Won’t allow people to be put at risk will ensure action”. A trail of retweets and comments poured in on the CM’s Twitter handle after he took note of the report.
The state transport department, however, backtracked after the CM’s tweet and claimed that they received a supply of tyres on Friday and there was no dearth of spare parts now. On Wednesday, Bhupinder Singh Rai, director, state transport, said they were not receiving tyres from CEAT, the manufacturing firm that supplies tyres under a contract.
I have not yet received a copy of the orders from the principal secretary as of now. When the copy comes to me, I will file a report the same day.Bhupinder Singh Rai, director, state transport department
He also said the firm curtailed its production for reasons best known to them. But on Friday, he changed his version on the matter. He said, “We have received the tyres from CEAT and there is no shortage now.”
On the department being asked to file a report on the matter by the CM, Rai said, “I have not yet received a copy of the orders from the principal secretary as of now. When the copy comes to me, I will file a report the same day”.
He also clarified that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) did not have an impact on supply or procurement of tyres as was earlier claimed by the general manager of Punjab Roadways in Ludhiana.
Sources in the department said officials were on tenterhooks after the news article was published. A lot of phone calls across different depots were exchanged in the last two days, they added. They further said the department’s claim that their shortage was met in one day also posed serious questions on its functioning.
The HT article highlighted a shortage of tyres and spare parts in 18 depots across the state. It was also reported that hundreds of buses were plying on the roads with worn-out tyres and outdated spare parts.
The department allocated 54 tyres in September for a fleet of 1,870 buses (including PUNBUS). Until five months ago, the Ludhiana depot, which is the busiest among all, got 40 tyres per month for 130 buses. However, in September, it received only eight tyres while in August it got only 10. The permitted lot varies between 25 and 40 tyres every month. The report also highlighted that the depot did not receive tyres for the month of October.