Lack of evening transport takes toll on Srinagar residents

Passengers demand Govt-run buses after sundown
School children on a stair case of an overcrowded local bus near Sanat Nagar in uptown Srinagar. [Image for representational purpose only]
School children on a stair case of an overcrowded local bus near Sanat Nagar in uptown Srinagar. [Image for representational purpose only]File/ GK

Srinagar: As winter is around the corner and days are getting shorter, the non-availability of public transport in the evenings is taking a toll on the people of Srinagar.

Scores of passengers across Srinagar are decrying the non-availability of transport during evening hours. The passengers said that after sundown they are left stranded in the City Centre due to the non-availability of public transport.

They said that in the evenings no cabs or buses are available for the passengers.

The passengers said that the problem is most prevalent on the routes of Hazratbal outskirts, Harwan areas, and uptown Srinagar.

“This affects the office goers, students, women, and elderly. The cab service yards that operate at Exchange Road Lal Chowk and Maisuma are mostly deserted in the evenings. The cab service of the Harwan route is also non-available after sundown. We have taken up the issue with cab operators several times but they do not care about rules and regulations,” said Shabir Ahmad of Harwan.

The passengers who board cabs from Exchange Road Cab Yard and Maisuma to Hazratbal areas of Chatrahama and Danihama said that the cab operators do not follow any timing.

“Passengers that rely on Maisuma Cab Yard, Exchange Cab Yard, and Harwan cab service are the primary sufferers. Everyone does not own a vehicle and we are dependent on public transport. For years now, the Srinagar administration has been sitting over the issue,” said a student from the Hazratbal area.

Greater Kashmir received many complaints from Hazratbal outskirts about the public transport issue. The passenger said unless authorities enforce timing for the passenger transport to follow, things would not improve.

An official from J&K Road Transport Corporation said that the corporation started buses on various routes of Srinagar to address the issue.

“A few buses ply on the Hazratbal outskirts also. However, unless all non-government bus operators and cabs operate on time, the issue will remain,” he said.

The passengers said that they want more RTC buses to be available on different routes, especially in the evening.

ARTO Srinagar, Arif Parvaiz Shah told Greater Kashmir that he would access the ground situation personally to ensure the issue was resolved.

“I will ensure an on-ground visit to look into the issue properly. I will also meet transport operators so that timings are strictly followed and passengers do not suffer,” Shah said.

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