The staff of Punjab Roadways and other state-run and private bus companies is irked with the illegal sale of tickets by agents on the premises of Shaheed Sukhdev Thapar Interstate Bus Terminal here.
With the illegal practice flourishing for years and district transport authorities not reining it in, several state transport firms and private bus companies continue to face losses.
An official of the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), requesting anonymity, said, “An agent hired by a local private bus company regularly approaches passengers and illegally sells tickets for higher prices while luring them with better services and seating arrangements in buses that remain stationed outside the stand. These private agents are not authorised to sell tickets on the bus stand premises.
But indifference of authorities has allowed them to operate brazenly.”
Sources claimed that higher transport authorities were hand in glove with these private bus companies. Therefore, the menace continued without any check.
Dharmesh Singh, a driver with the Punjab Roadways said, “This agent day in, day out blatantly charges Rs 30 more than the approved fare to Uttarakhand. When he was asked to reveal his identity and stop this practice, he threatened us that we would lose our jobs if we confronted him in future.”
When contacted, Rashpal Singh Makhu, general manager, Punjab Roadways, Ludhiana depot, said, “No such practice has been brought to my notice so far, but I will ask the checking staff to keep a close watch, and if is any illegality is found, strict action will be taken against the culprit.”