Nagpur: The public transport facility provided by the Municipal Corporation in main cities is running in loss everywhere. The public transport is very convenient for the people and so the State and Central governments help the Municipal Corporations from time to time as per their demand to come out of the losses.
Municipal Corporations as per Maharashtra‘s MMC Act are providing the public transport service in their cities. In Nagpur to the service has been started but the earlier operator damaged the government property and cheated the Municipal corporation. Now, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has given the charge to DIMTS to run the public transport but this one is also not carrying out its responsibility as per the agreement but instead appointing only new conductors for the three red buses and patting its back.
Transport Manager, Ruling party and Municipal Corporation administration are protecting operators raising fingers at its own procedures. As per the April 2016 “Request for Proposal” the DIMTS was supposed to complete all the points under the Project Development Services for Public Bus Service in Nagpur Urban Region and for this NMC had asked for bank guarantee from DIMTS. NMC had even fixed monthly amount for its service to be given. DIMTS refused bank guarantee. The dispute went on and finally it became clear the NMC had asked the bank guarantee for the whole project. Since the project is not even half the bank guarantee was reduced. This was supported and jointly done by all leaders. If the bank guarantee has been reduced because the project is not complete then the payment should also be reduced. The DIMTS has been gaining because of dual policy.
Agreement only on papers
As per the passengers requirement the bus does not come in time. There are thousands of passengers travelling to and fro and these people have to go by their own vehicles or other illegal transport system. DIMTS has not changed the timings set by earlier contractor. The buses service is on five main routes on outskirts of city specially the industrial area. Over the entire year besides Wednesdays there are also other holidays and so total 300 days they provide bus service and only 800 industrial units are working 24×7. Many of the companies here have their own buses. Some companies’ workers and officials travel from one end to the other end of the city. NMC Transport Department will benefit by Rs 1 crore if it provides city buses are started till MIDC. Presently the NMC is running in loss.
The MLA of Hingna Samir Meghe has demanded a bus service from Hingna to Butibori via Chhatrapati square and that at least 10 trips be made. NMC will benefit at least by Rs 2 lakh after deducting all the expenditures.
Capable surveyor not available with DIMTS
For perfect survey DIMTS does not have capable surveyor for route. Presently the transport department has 387 buses out these 337 are giving services on fixed routes. Since, the routes of 50 buses have not been fixed and they are just parked. 45 Mini buses were to be bought but Transport Manager Shivaji Jagtap is against it. With this the Transport project has been completed by just 70 per cent. NMC is providing 40 per cent profit to DIMTS though the project is not complete.
Due lack of planning by the DIMTS, the buses often come late, and sometimes as per their whims and fancies the service is dropped. Since the passengers cannot depend on the bus service there is no other go but to opt for some other transport.
Operation Management support
If the conductor does not come on time that particular trip is put to loss. By chance even if the conductor comes on time the ticket machine is not working again affecting the trip. The Red Bus trips were affected and the loss was reported to be Rs 1.5 crore.
Ticketing and Revenue management
There is no need of DIMTS for this work. This simple work and can be done by the NMC or someone else.
Last Saturday and Sunday without issuing any public notice 80 buses were off the road. The commuters were put to great inconvenience. There were complaints at the call centres. DIMTS did not give the reason in writing to the Transport department or the Chairman. They have been openly flouting the rule.
Human Resource Development
As per agreement the DIMTS does not have Revenue Protection Squad, Vehicle and flight Inspector, Transport Policy/ Transport Planning expert, Human Resource Expert, Automobile –Civil Support Engineer, Supervisor, Office Assistance. This shows they are not following the agreement. Since DIMTS has not appointed employees as per RFP this means it is putting transport Department in trouble.
Bus Stop Monitoring and Management
Aapli Bus stops are of ordinary grade not electrical and smart bus stops. At stops there are no vending machines and other facilities but these will be there if the bus service is regular and stops at the bus stops. On this point DIMTS is absolutely zero.
Integration of Multi-mode Transport
DIMTS has not touched this point, from Maha Metro stations the Aapli bus connectivity issue is lying in cold storage.
Support system to improve Operators Efficiency
There is no difference between Vansh and DIMTS. Giving the reason of running in loss the route is changed or the bus is withdrawn. Vansh claims to be running 470 buses while DIMTS 337 buses. 50 buses are just parked because the routes are not decided while purchase of 45 buses has been stopped by transport department.
It may be mentioned that if the Red Bus operators do not get the pending amount of September then for the lack of fuel they would stop the bus service from today or Monday and if is half payment for the month of October is not received then buses would stop as the drivers’ payment would not be made. The escrow account of the operators was not opened though all formalities were done and the amount was also ready. This was during the period of former Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar. Due to the negligent officer of NMC’s Transport Department there is danger of audit objection.
—Rajeev Ranjan Kushwaha