COVID-19: MSRTC to resume inter-district bus services in Maharashtra

Updated: 19 August, 2020 19:17 IST | Rajendra B Aklekar | Mumbai

Maharashtra government gives a go ahead for the resumption of MSRTC bus services; passengers would not require e-passes for inter-district travel, as per official circular issued

Mumbaikars board an MSRTC bus at Borivli. Pic/Satej Shinde
Mumbaikars board an MSRTC bus at Borivli. Pic/Satej Shinde

Amid the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra, the state government announced the resumption of inter-district bus services. The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC), which has one of the country's biggest bus fleets with over 7,000 buses will be back on streets once again from Thursday, August 20.

According to an official notification from the MSRTC, travellers would not require e-passes and on-line reservations for all class of buses have already started. The lifting of the ban is a part of Mission Begin Again Phase 6 undertaken by the state government. The decision has been taken keeping in mind the Ganesh Chaturthi festival which begins from August 22. The buses will operate at a lesser frequency and shall follow the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) in place to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Residents from Konkan welcomed the decision. Yeshwant Jadyar, secretary of Vasai-Sawantwadi Railway Pravasi Sanghatna said it was better late than never., "Although most of the crowd has already left the cities for villages to attend the festival, the buses will help during return journeys due to limitations in train services. Also, it will help in local last-mile connectivity which was missing all these days, he said.

He further said, "Local last mile connectivity will be the key for safer transport for those traveling from big cities to villages in Konkan. This will not just help avoid their exploitation at the hands of local transporters, but also help them to reach villagers faster."

Minister of Transport confirmed the development and also released a public statement.

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First Published: 19 August, 2020 19:10 IST

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