KSRTC runs more buses, but not enough

28 services from Bangalore to Kozhikode on Thursday but passengers say all seats are booked.

KOZHIKODE: With the Onam-Bakrid festival season underway, the public as well as private buses and trains plying between Bangalore and Kozhikode are witnessing a heavy rush this week, with KSRTC operating a host of special services on the route. Thousands of students, businessmen and IT professionals are employed in Bangalore from the five districts of Malabar region.

But the Malayalees in Bangalore are experiencing a difference while booking by KSRTC buses to Kozhikode as the corporation has ensured more services catering to the needs of the passengers. KSRTC will be operating 28 services to Kozhikode on Thursday, on the eve of Bakrid including eight special services. On Friday, the number of buses operating in the route are 27 including special services. Interestingly all the seats in the route are already booked.

Saranya Thaloor, a student in Bangalore from Kozhikode told DC that all the seats from Bangalore to Kozhikode were already reserved on both private tourist buses as well as special services of the KSRTC. “It was easy to reserve tickets in KSRTC this year as there are more special services to Malabar. However all the seats are now booked,” she said, adding that a majority of services were Super Deluxe and Super Express services. “Earlier we got reservations during the Onam season if we reserved tickets much in advance. This time I reserved a ticket only one week ago, but got it,” she added.

However, passengers’ forums like ‘Anavandi’, Bangalore unit alleged that the KSRTC was neglecting ordinary passengers from Bangalore as there were only one or two Superfast services toward Kozhikode. Aneesh P, a member of the group said that all other services were the elite Super Deluxe, Super Express services in which the fare was high and no standing tickets were allowed.

“The direct services to the Southern part of the state are much less”, he said, adding that most of the buses towards the South were operating through the Mysore-Kutta route instead of the direct route through Salem. “The passengers to the South are forced to travel about 5 hours more to reach the destination as the buses are travelling through the circuitous route”, he said.

Meanwhile, the travel operators and agencies have already almost doubled the fares on the Bangalore-Kozhikode route. Going by the reservation chart of private bus operators, the fare from Kozhikode to Bangalore varies from Rs 600 to Rs 900 whereas the return ticket from Bangalore to Kozhikode starts at Rs 1,000 and goes up to Rs 1,950.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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