Himachal Road Transport Corporation resumes bus service to Delhi

Tribune News Service
Shimla, November 3 The Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) has resumed limited bus services to Delhi following reopening of the Inter-State Bus Terminals (ISBTs) from November 3 by the Delhi Government. Volvo and AC bus services will not be plied.

The HRTC, on the very first day of the opening of the ISBTs, scheduled 21 buses to the Capital from different depots. The development will bring a huge relief to the people as well as the HRTC which had been suffering huge losses since the imposition of the lockdown. "We will see the response and occupancy and then decide on starting more buses," said HRTC Managing Director Sandeep Kumar, who took charge just a day back following the administrative reshuffle.

Delhi Transport Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited has issued a comprehensive set of SOPs for the buses plying to ISBTs. It includes sanitisation of buses at the origin and at the ISBT, thermal checking of commuters before boarding the Delhi-bound buses, no standing passenger, mandatory masks, and testing the suspected passengers. It has also advised that the buses entering the ISBTs should not be older than the 2015 model, considering the alarming pollution levels in Delhi.

Nevertheless, the HRTC will be more than happy to comply with all SOPs as the lion's share of its revenue comes from its inter-state services. With the inter-state services being halted, HRTC revenues took a massive hit, resulting in salaries being disbursed in the third week. Within the state, the HRTC has not resumed buses on many routes yet due to poor occupancy, especially in the rural areas.

"We will review the situation soon and try and rationalise the routes," said the Managing Director.

The MD has issued directions to ensure advance online booking.

Besides, he has also directed officials to record the day-to-day income of all inter-state services for the continuation of the services and restoration of other routes.

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