Students turn vandals, seek reduced fare

Wrath falls on seven vehicles

Kathmandu, February 24:

Students of the Tri-Chandra College vandalised seven vehicles at the Ratna Park area today.

They resorted to vandalism after transport workers, saying that transport workers had been denying students discounted transport fares.

Following the incident, transport workers parked their vehicles on roads and staged demonstrations in different parts of the Kathmandu Valley. Vehicular movement was disturbed the whole day.

The students smashed windowpanes of four microbuses and vandalised one vehicle belonging to Kantipur Yatayat and two buses belonging to Nepal Yatayat, claiming that the transport workers did not give concession to students even after they showed their identity cards. Dozens of students were seen asking passengers whether or not transport workers have given discount to students on board.

Transport workers, especially workers of microbuses, have been refusing to give discount to the students citing the difficulty to get fuel. “We cannot give them discount because we have to queue up for four days to refuel our vehicles,” a driver told this daily at Ratna Park. He said the discount will be given only after the government ensures a smooth supply of fuel.

Parking their vehicles in the middle of the road in Kalanki, Gongabu, Balaju, Maharajgunj, Ratna Park and Koteswor, the transport workers demanded compensation for the damages.

The agitation ended after the government agreed to provide Rs 100,000 as compensation to the vandalised vehicles after the talks between the Chief District Officer of Kathmandu and transport entrepreneurs. “The CDO has agreed to provide Rs 1 lakh soon. More compensation will be provided after estimating the losses,” said Hari Sharan KC, a central committee member of Federation of Nepali National Transport Entrepreneurs.

KC, who is also president of Kantipur Yatayat, said students, who do not get concession on transport fares even after producing valid identity cards should lodge complaints at the FNNTE. The federation will take action against the transport workers concerned, he said, adding, “All the students will get discount on transport fare.”