In a move aimed at breaking the existing monopoly in the transport system, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has mooted an open-door policy for bus permits, except on national highway routes, while directing the Transport Department to allocate certain bus routes for youth in order to facilitate employment generation.
Taking forward his government’s agenda to reform the beleaguered transport system in the state, and free it from the monopolistic shackles created by SAD-BJP government, the Chief Minister suggested rationalization of inter-state routes to make them more competitive.Chairing a preliminary meeting of the Transport Department to draft the new transport policy, the Chief Minister directed the concerned officials to explore the modalities for interstate route rationalization.
It was decided at the meeting to go for e-tendering on lucrative routes to make the business more viable and profitable, while providing a level-playing field to all players. The draft policy being prepared by the department will be put before the state cabinet for approval soon, according to an official spokesperson.
In another step to eliminate the transport mafia, Chief Minister suggested permits to have registration numbers of buses mentioned thereon for plying. He also asked the department to work out the modalities of allowing transfer of permits after charging some fee. The transfer of permits was earlier allowed only on condemnation of a bus to a new bus or by way of inheritance.
Chief Minister suggested measures to augment the intra-city transport system by introducing permits for mini buses to youth under the ‘Yaari Enterprise’ and ‘Apni Gaddi Apna Rozgar’ schemes proposed in the Congress manifesto for employment generation.
CM directed to incorporate operation of electric taxis, as well as road safety issues, in the state in the new transport policy. The meeting discussed the issue of disparity in taxes being levied on luxury and non-luxury business.
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