(TibetanReview.net, Nov05’20) – In a further opening up of Covid-19 restrictions, the Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) has resumed limited bus services to Delhi following the reopening of the Inter-State Bus Terminals (ISBTs) from Nov 3 by the Delhi Government. However, Volvo and AC bus services will not be plied for the time being, reported the tribuneindia.com Nov 4.
“We will see the response and occupancy and then decide on starting more buses,” HRTC Managing Director Sandeep Kumar, who took charge just a day back following the administrative reshuffle, was quoted as saying.
Route operations to and from Delhi have opened at 18 places in Himachal Pradesh, including Dharamsala, Mandi, Shimla, manali, Keylong, Reking Peo, Chamba, and Palampur, as well as Pathankot in Punjab.
The report said the Delhi Transport Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited had issued a comprehensive set of SOPs for the buses plying to ISBTs. It includes sanitisation of buses at the origin and at the ISBT, thermal checking of commuters before boarding the Delhi-bound buses, no standing passenger, mandatory masks, and testing of suspected passengers. Besides, buses entering the ISBTs should not be older than 2015 models, considering the alarming pollution levels in Delhi.
HRTC gets the lion’s share of its revenue from its inter-state services. With the inter-state services being halted, HRTC revenues took a massive hit, resulting in salaries being disbursed in the third week. Within the state, the HRTC has not resumed buses on many routes yet due to poor occupancy, especially in the rural areas, the report noted.
The MD was reported to have issued directions to facilitate advance online booking.