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The Government of Kerala has announced that it has decided to put on hold its earlier decision to operate long distance bus services of its Kerala State Road Transport Corporation starting 1 August.
The Ministry had earlier announced that 206 long-distance buses would be operational starting 1 August, after a halt in operations for over four months because of the Covid-19 outbreak and the lockdowns that were in place.
The decision comes after an increase of positive Covid-19 cases in the State. The State's Transport Minister, Mr A K Saseendran had earlier announced that long-distance inter-district services were to start at the beginning of August.
The Transport Minister said, "We were hoping to resume operations of inter district services from tomorrow. But a review of containment zones made us rethink our decision as many places across the state fall under containment zones."
In related news, the Government of Kerala had announced a 25 percent increase in fares for the State owned and operated Kerala State Road Transport Corporation buses. The Government said that the increase in fares also applied to private buses.
The decision to increase fares was taken in order to help the public transport network recover from some losses incurred during the lockdown period. The Ministry announced that the minimum fare would stand at Rs 8, but fares would be calculated for the first 2.5 kilometers instead of the regular 5 kilometers.
The fare revision committee was headed by Justice M Ramachandra who requested for more concessions for students. The Ministry however decided to keep fares at regular rates for students considering all schools and educational institutions remained closed during the lockdown period, and will continue to remain close until the end of August.
Thoughts About The Government's Decision To Put On Hold Inter-District Bus Services In Kerala
This is a fantastic decision taken by the Government of Kerala. The Covid-19 situation hasn't been resolved just yet, and the Center has said that positive cases are going to increase. Stopping long distance bus operations will definitely help prevent the spread of the highly contagious virus.