DoTM’s monitoring hampered

Kathmandu, October 18

The Department of Transport Management (DoTM) is facing a severe shortage of fuel, which is hampering its efforts to monitor the passenger buses charging exorbitant fares on passengers heading to their destinations outside Kathmandu Valley with the start of the festive season.

The department’s vehicles are facing acute paucity of fuel at a time when it needs to monitor the passenger buses that are allegedly taking advantage of Dashain rush and shortage of fuel products across the country owing to unannounced blockade at Nepal-India border and ongoing Tarai agitation.

“We have tried to get fuel at various places but failed, our monitoring task has been affected after 15 litres of oil that we brought in a time span of seven days finished,” said Department’s Spokesperson Basanta Adhikary.

A complaint has already been filed stating that the Tata Sumo vehicles that ply the Balku-Hetauda route are charging three-fold the usual amount. DoTM has sent a letter to the chief district officer of Makawanpur to monitor such vehicles that arrive in the district.

The vehicles, during inspection by the department, were found to be using escape vault to avoid action with support of a lie that the vehicles are ‘reserved’ ones. Adhikary said that during inspection passengers have also been saying that the vehicles are reserved, which is attributable to their compulsion to reach their destinations. He added that if the passengers file complaint after the festive season is over, the government would initiate action.

The traffic police has arranged for an ombudsman position with a call centre at 103 where the passengers can call and file complaint. The vehicles falling under the radar of complaint will be stripped off their bill book and subjected to further action.