Kathmandu, September 14
Although the Kathmandu Metropolitan City had announced that it would operate 30 new disabled-friendly buses in Kathmandu Valley by mid-September, Sajha Yatayat has yet to import new buses from Mumbai of India.
Sajha Yatayat along with Kathmandu Metropolitan City have invested Rs 100,000,000 in the project with each bus costing at least Rs 3,500,000.
“As per Sajha Yatayat’s request, we have agreed to wait for a month to launch the new buses” Gyanendra Karki, spokesperson at KMC, told The Himalayan Times, “We hope Sajha will be able to do this prior to Dashain.”
Sajha Yatayat informed that it may take slightly longer for the buses to arrive than originally planned. Bhusan Tuladhar, board member of Sajha Yatayat, said, “Even after the buses arrive in Kathmandu, we need at least a month to add CCTV cameras and ramps for the disabled among other additional features.”
According to him, most of the newly introduced buses would be operated on the existing routes of Sajha Yatayat.
Mumbai-based Ashok Leylani Limited was contracted to manufacture these customised buses, which are both disabled-friendly and environmental-friendly as compared to the previous buses manufactured by TATA.
These buses feature more than 40 bucket seats, wide standing spaces, CCTV camera and television as well. Sajha is set to launch e-ticketing system and Sajha Yatayat location tracker app very soon.
Currently, there are 16 Sajha buses plying three different routes for the past three years.
Sajha Yatayat is a cooperative public transport organisation which was established in 1961-62 to provide efficient and affordable public transport service in Kathmandu Valley.
In the last decade, the organisation suffered some institutional turbulence, but now it has been revived as a cooperative organisation with the participation of the Government of Nepal.
A version of this article appears in print on September 15, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.