After 41 buses reached here a couple of days back as part of the first phase of the city bus service slated to kick-start on January 15, the Amritsar Municipal Corporation has finalised the routes the buses will operate on and also the rate card.
The city bus service was first scheduled to be flagged off on January 11 by deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal but MC officials say there was a "minor change" in the original schedule.
The project was stuck for long and had several trial runs in the past. The 41 buses are part of a total of 150 buses which will ply on city roads in different phases.
Giving details, municipal commissioner DPS Kharbanda said, "A bus terminal has already been set up at Mall Mandi for the service. In the initial phase, the service will touch prominent places such as the railway station, bus stand and the Golden Temple. It will also cover Daburji, Circular Road, Chehhertta and India Gate on Attari Road."
The order for all the 150 buses has already been placed and as soon as more buses arrive, more routes will be touched in the next phase, he added.
Deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal will inaugurate the facility on January 15, the municipal commissioner informed.
The MC has entrusted the job of running the service to a Karnataka-based company, which will be responsible for managing, hiring and paying the salaries of the staff besides bearing maintenance cost.
Each bus is equipped with four CCTV cameras of which two cameras would be fitted outside the bus and the two will be inside.
The municipal commissioner said the CCTV cameras would be of great help as far as the security of the passengers was concerned with an increase in amount of surveillance.
The buses that have arrived are in the AC and non-AC category. The municipal corporation said the minimum fare in non-AC buses would be Rs 2 whereas it would be Rs 5 in AC ones.
The fare will increase according to the length of journey.
To ensure the smooth functioning of the project, the officials of MC, district administration and the police department held a meeting. Kharbanda said the police were likely to play an important role in the project as far as traffic aspect was concerned.
Routes proposed in first phase
Routes: 1. From bus terminal to Hussainpura Chowk. The route will cover Hussainpura Bridge, Dental College, SSSS Chowk, Lawrence Road, Income Tax Chowk, Kitchlew Chowk, Circuit House Chowk, railway station, Putlighar, Chheharta, Sham Singh Attariwala Chowk.
2. From Sultanwind Road to Bhandari Bridge. The route will cover B-Division police station, Sheranwala Gate and Dharam Singh Market
3. Hall Gate to Durgiana Temple. It will cover railway station, Ajnala Road and all gates in the walled city