Kochi: To most bureaucrats, heading Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) would be their last option. Not for Biju Prabhakar IAS, now serving as Food Safety Commissioner.
To him, KSRTC is an essential service just like the Electricity Board without which the transport sector would be monopolized and commuters would be required to pay twice the fare they dole out now.
While he is not sure about the efficient running of KSDP, the managing director of Kerala Medical Services Corporation Ltd, which he holds additionally, believes KSRTC can be made profitable. “KSRTC is one public utility service which could be made profitable, if a set of new initiatives are implemented”, he said.
In fact, he has been following developments in the corporation for the last several years and even presented a paper on the subject during his recent IAS training programme in Mussorie. The decision of the oil companies to impose an additional cost on diesel for bulk purchasers, including the KSRTC, should be seen as an opportunity to reduce operating costs.
Leveraging this crisis, the KSRTC should move for conversion to CNG. There is a possibility of setting up CNG pumps in KSRTC-owned land without any investment through the PPP mode.
His series of suggestions for turning around the corporation’s fortune includes wet lease of buses, courier services and shared purchase of buses (to include employees as a participants), among