Chennai, Jan 12 (): Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in an attempt to facilitate smooth journey ahead of the Pongal festive rush, announced special bus services across the state. She also sent a strong warning to private operators who usually operate buses charging double the usual fare.
Over 5,000 special services would be operated across the State, connecting various parts including Chennai from 12 to 17 January following instructions from the Chief Minister, a government release here said.
This includes return services from the respective destinations, it said, adding, government will act against private operators over complaints of overcharging commuters.
Passengers who find private operators charging exorbitant fare during Pongal can contact the State Express Transport Corporation’s telephone number 24794709 to register complaints, it said. ‘The Chief Minister has also ordered booking of tickets for special buses through internet,’ it added.
Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) will operate 250 services between 14 and 17 January connecting various tourist hotspots in and around the city, it said.
The release, while stating that all these measures are being taken for the smooth transport of the public during Pongal, expressed hope that members of the public would celebrate the harvest festival in a peaceful and happy manner, thanks to these initiatives.
Transport has always been a pet area for Jayalalithaa. Recently, she launched online booking of bus tickets, a move which brought relief to lakhs of commuters all over the State.
In the last week of December, she announced that the State government has decided to buy 3,000 new buses at a cost of Rs 434.75 crore, to replace the old ones. An official release said 520 buses will be purchased in the first phase and Rs 75.36 crore has been allotted to State-owned transport corporations for the purpose.
“Transportation plays an important role in the growth of a State. The transport corporations run by the Tamil Nadu government connects various parts of the State with each other. Not just that, buses operated by these corporations also links States like Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Puducherry with Tamil Nadu,” the release said.