Local bus service to restart in Chandigarh by May 21
The Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) will be starting its local bus service by May 21.
With the city entering phase four of the Covid-19 lockdown, the UT administration in its order issued on Monday allowed plying of both local and interstate public transport.
However, on Tuesday, CTU buses remained off road on both city and long routes, as both the interstate bus terminals (ISBTs) have been to put to alternative use — the Sector 26 vegetable market has been temporarily shifted to the Sector 17 ISBT, while at the ISBT-43, arrangements have been made for transportation of migrant workers to the railway station.
The holding centre setup for migrant persons at the ISBT-43 is being shifted to the Chandigarh College of Engineering Technology (CCET), Sector 26, and the bus stand will be handed over once again to the UT transport department. The department has also requested the administration to vacate the ISBT-17 so that bus services can be resumed from there too.
“The department is making efforts so that CTU buses are started by May 21. We will be starting the service from the ISBT-43 first,” said Uma Shankar Gupta, director, transport. First, 15 to 20 buses will be started, and the number will increase gradually. The timings and routes for CTU buses are being worked out by the department and will be made public in a day or two.
For starting local bus to all areas of the tricity – Panchkula, Chandigarh and Mohali — and interstate bus service, the department has written to Punjab and Haryana for their consent. According to the central government’s Lockdown 4.0 guidelines, buses on interstate routes can be run only after consent is taken from all states concerned.
All buses will run with 50% capacity and will be sanitized after every trip. There will be volunteers with thermal screening at the bus terminals to screen the passengers before boarding.
HOLDING CENTRE FOR MIGRANT PERSONS SHIFTED
Considering that the movement of CTU buses will commence shortly from ISBT-43, the holding centres for migrant persons will now operate from the Chandigarh College of Engineering Technology (CCET), Sector 26 . The stranded persons are required to reach there to avail themselves of the Shramik special train facility.
AK Sinha, UT finance secretary, said that 10 more Shramik trains have been planned for carrying migrant labour and stranded persons from Chandigarh.
The destinations include Motihari, Gaya, Madhapura, Ara, Danapur and Chapra in Bihar, Dhanbad in Jharkhand, and Lucknow, Moradabad, Shahajanpur, Sultanpur, Khagaria, Jounpur and Hardoi in Uttar Pradesh.
However, there will be no train on May 20 and 21.