As the Tamil Nadu ruling DMK government has drawn a sharp criticism over the alleged implementation of private bus services in Chennai, the state transport department has issued a clarification and asserted that there is no change in the 'status quo'.
Recently, it was reported that the Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC), the body that controls and operates government bus service in Chennai, has decided to add 1,000 buses under which the private operators would own and operate the vehicles. As the development had a rampant attention with the opposition parties and the government employees of MTC had voiced against such drive, the government has responded back.
On Monday - March 6, Tamil Nadu Minister for Transport SS Sivasankar has held a press conference in Chief Secretariat during which he dispelled the worry and concerns. Sivasankar said that even if the plans are implemented, the government employees will not get affected as the existing fleet will not be suspended and no government bus service will be handed over to the private operators.
By citing that the false information about the privatisation of bus operations in the city has been spread, the minister stated that the consultation will be held on whether to operate private buses on high-demand routes. The minister has also subdued the fear of the employees and appealed to the transport unions to withdraw the protest as the state government has the authority to take the final call.
Sivasankar has also assured that none of the existing government schemes will get affected and further said that the bus ticket concessions for students, women, and senior citizens will continue to be in place. "The pros and cons of private bus operations in Chennai Corporation will be studied and finally, a report will be prepared and a decision will be taken within three months", the minister added.