After over two months, private city and service buses resumed their operations in Mangaluru city and undivided Dakshina Kannada, respectively, on Monday.
Passenger response was moderate while city buses were near full to their capacity with social distancing being practised during morning peak hours. The Dakshina Kannada Bus Operators Association, the umbrella organisation of city bus operators in Mangaluru, deployed about 125 of the total 350 odd buses, initially — rationing between routes.
“The response was good,” said association president Dilraj Alva. But for rainfall, the response would have been a little better, he told The Hindu. However, very few travelled after the morning peak hours, he added.
Similarly, private express buses too started their service between Mangaluru and Udupi and other places, including Karkala and Kundapur, in a staggered manner. Occupancy was moderate on these routes too.
Buses were completely sanitised inside as well as outside before their first service at the State Bank Bus Terminal as per the guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. Sanitisers too were provided on the buses for passengers.
Like in the morning peak hours, buses were full in the evening peak hours. Only those who had essential work as well as those on employment made use of the services even as people appeared to have desisted from unnecessary travel.
Anitha Shetty, a resident of Konaje who works in a private firm in Mangaluru, said that resumption of city bus services has helped her commute between the city and workplace. Otherwise, she would have lost her job, Ms. Shetty said.
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