Kathmandu, August 9
At a time when the government has initiated the process to set up an independent authority to regulate public transportation sector across the country, an expert has suggested forming two separate wings — one to oversee policies and another to look into operational aspects.
Citing that existing government agencies looking after the transportation sector have been focusing only on policies, the expert has opined that the planned transportation authority should be more focused on the operation of public transportation, especially in the Kathmandu Valley.
“It is due to lack of dedicated focus on operational part of the public transportation from government agencies that public transportation is unmanaged in Kathmandu. The government should make two wings at the planned transport authority, with one wing only focused on managing the operation of public transportation,” said Ashish Gajurel, a transport traffic engineer.
As per him, the government should develop the wing that would look after operation of public transportation in company modality and give shares to all existing public transport operators.
“As there are thousands of public transportation operators, the government should give them shares based on their stake in the sector. This will ensure participation of transporters in properly operating and managing the country’s public transportation,” added Gajurel.
Along with this, the transport authority should formulate integrated vehicle route and ticketing system in coordination with transporters, as per him.
“In the lack of proper route and operation time system in the public transportation sector, transporters often tend to operate their vehicles only during peak hours to earn profits while they don’t operate vehicles in the early mornings and during afternoons. This results in difficulty in managing public transportation during off-peak hours,” informed Gajurel.
The Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport is preparing to set up an independent transport authority, under the leadership of mayor of the Kathmandu Metropolitan City, in a bid to properly manage the public transportation sector, especially in the Kathmandu Valley.
A version of this article appears in print on August 10, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.