Bhubaneswar city bus employees protest route change

Bhubaneswar: City bus drivers and conductors staged a demonstration at Master Canteen bus stand today against State government’s decision to allow city buses to ply on 6 routes instead of existing 14 routes.

The decision was taken keeping in view the recently launched ‘Mo Bus’ services. In the first phase of Mo Bus initiative, as many as 100 new buses have started running on 9 routes of the city.

“We were asked to take the buses on different routes but we have refused. If they want to stop the service they should refund our security deposit which is Rs 10,000 taken from conductors and Rs 5,000 from drivers,” a city bus driver said.

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The bus drivers and conductors have also demanded timely salary and 8-hour duty instead of the existing 18- hour schedule.Due to the protest city buses remained off roads today.

Responding to the matter, Chairman of Dream Team Shahara (DTS), which is the operator of city bus services, Nishikant Mishra said “As many as 18 buses were plying on the old route and some of the routes are being used by ‘Mo Bus’ as well. So we have been asked to stop our services on those routes as it will create problems for passengers and surveillance work.”

Currently, as many as 110 city buses ply on 14 routes from Master Canteen Square to Jatni, Cuttack, Puri, Patia and Nandankanan.