Mangaluru :Though the Dakshina Kannada Regional Transport Authority (RTA) on Thursday directed the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) to operate air-conditioned services between the city and the international airport, the corporation is unlikely to commence the operations.
Chairing a meeting of the RTA here, Deputy Commissioner A.B. Ibrahim asked the KSRTC, which had sought regularisation of temporary permits between Mangaluru Central Railway Station and Bajpe, to operate a set of services to the city airport. He said such services would benefit hundreds of air passengers who now have to shell out exorbitant amount of money for taxis. The RTA also granted permits to KSRTC to operate services to Bajpe.
However, senior KSRTC officials said they were not inclined towards operating the services. “We had operated the services for more than a year in 2012-13 and suffered heavy loss due to low patronage. We even tried air-conditioned buses and operations towards Kasaragod, but in vain. Hence we will not make a fresh start,” said an official. However, two regular buses would be operated to Bajpe via A.B. Shetty Circle, Bavutagudde, KSRTC and Kavoor, he said.
Meanwhile, the Authority regularised four temporary permits for KSRTC for services between Bejai and Mudipu via Thokkottu and Konaje, even as applications for seven new permits on the same route were deferred. It also regularised one temporary permit each for Someshwara and Adyarapadavu. With regular permits, the KSRTC can issue concessional bus passes to students on the route, said an official.
The RTA also granted temporary permits to KSRTC to operate one service each between Puttur and Sampigekatte, and Puttur and Sringeri, via Dharmasthala, Charmadi, Mudigere and Horanadu.
When private operators raised several objections on KSRTC’s applications, social activist G. Hanumanth Kamath asked the RTA to give preferential treatment to the corporation since it it would discharge various social responsibilities too. “You also give permits to private operators and let there be healthy competition. People would choose the right operator,” he said. Superintendent of Police Sharanappa and Regional Transport Officer Afzal Ahmed Khan were present.