Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service
Amritsar, June 23
Around one-and-a-half month ago, the officials concerned held a meeting to review the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) project. Despite passing of around 45 days, there is no headway in the project. Only 10 busses are playing on two separate routes in the city. Both routes are incomplete as a railway over bridge (ROBs) is being constructed.
Residents avoid boarding the Metro bus from the railway station to the Attari bypass chowk as there is no change in the bus fare.
The number of passengers slightly increased on the Verka Road route due to hot weather conditions and rain. Most of the times, bus can be seen vacant expect in the morning and evening hours, which are generally considered as office hours.
Local Bodies Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, Finance Minister Manpreet Badal, local Congress MLAs and officials concerned at the MC office conducted a meeting to review the BRTS project on May 14. It was decided to make several changes in the project, including making the Metro Bus service available for the city residents.
The BRTS project, worth Rs 600 crore, could not be implemented on all routes due to lack of proper infrastructure. Former Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had inaugurated the project before the Assembly elections to get some poll advantage. The project got a lukewarm response due to high fare from the day one.
It was decided to redesign the project at the meeting, but there is no sign of change till date.
Harbans Singh, incharge, BRTS project, said, “We have told the senior officials that the high fare is a major issue and it should be revised. They have not revised the bus fare till date. We will write to the authorities once again. The construction of a ROB is going on and it will complete soon. The construction of a bus stand is also going on. We have got more than 60 buses and all are ready to ply on the designated routes.”