Transporters and govt meet ends inconclusively

Kathmandu, August 27

The government’s attempt to open the pre-booking of bus tickets for Dashain early went in vain after the meeting between transporters and the Department of Transport Management (DoTM) held today ended inconclusively.

Both transporters and the government were not able to fix the date for opening pre-booking of bus tickets for Dashain after DoTM refused to address the demand of transporters to hike fares and allow passengers to either travel or transport luggage atop the vehicles on the top carriage.

Citing that various roads across the country have been badly damaged, which is a threat to transporters and their vehicles, transporters had been demanding government to increase transportation fare on long routes for Dashain. They are also against the government’s move to disallow buses to carry passengers on the top carriage.

“The demand made by the government to remove top carriages of buses is illogical as top carriage is used to transport goods of passengers,” said Saroj Sitaula, general secretary of the Federation of Nepalese National Transport Entrepreneurs (FNNTE). He also said that the government should review the fares before the pre-booking of bus tickets is announced.

Meanwhile, Roop Narayan Bhattarai, director general of DoTM, said that the government will revisit the demand of transporters and think of ways on how the government could facilitate transport entrepreneurs during Dashain.

“We will have a meeting soon to find a solution and immediately open pre-booking of bus tickets for Dashain,” said Bhattarai.

Meanwhile, it has been learnt that DoTM has already formed a technical committee to study the possibility of introducing new transportation fares soon. However, DoTM officials have been saying that the new fares can be implemented only after Dashain and Tihar as a hike in transportation fare will create additional financial pressure on the public in festive season.