PANAJI: Admitting that there are shortage of buses on several routes of Goa, Transport Minister Mauvin Godinho on Thursday assured on the floor of the house to make some ‘Jugaad’ (arrangements) to provide buses in the remote areas to facilitate transportation of students.
BJP’s Poriem MLA Deviya Rane, through Calling Attention, had said that people of the Poriem Constituency are concerned over the safety and security of young students from the village of Surla, Sattari (in North Goa) due to irregular buses on the route, resulting in students availing risky alternate mode of transportation and routes to reach school.
“Students travel around 20 km to reach schools. When they don’t get buses, they go by trucks and tempos coming from ‘ghat’ (of Goa-Karnataka border). This is a very risky situation. Parents are always worried for their children because of this situation. Since Covid crisis, many buses have stopped operations. Buses should be increased in the village areas,” she said, adding students suffer due to shortage of public transport.
“Children walk a lot to reach the schools and home. Parents are making ‘Jugaad’ to reach their children to school. We really require regular buses in remote areas as schools are at longer distances. Please increase the fleet of buses to get rid of risky situations,” Rane said.
While replying to her, Mauvin Godinho said that the problem exists across Goa.
“There are less buses. Even KTCL (state run buses) has fewer buses and the private sector is not purchasing new buses after Covid. I have requested the Chief Minister to give additional funds to procure new buses. There are demands from various areas,” Godinho said.
“MLA Deviya Rane has said that children reach school by making ‘Jugaad’, now even I will have to make some ‘Jugaad’ and give special attention to providing buses in rural areas,” he said.
He said that the government has planned to hire private buses. “This seems to be the only solution. We will make our best efforts to give buses on several routes,” he said.