IMPHAL, Feb 24: Yesterday, pedestrians in Imphal market got a free ride as JNURM buses were pressed into service in the Imphal main market. Today, as fares were charged, the two semi-low floor buses could earn only Rs. 7500 from 1500 tickets sold.
According to Traffic Police, the two JNURM buses cruised in and around the main market area 18 times from 10 am to 4 pm as vehicular traffic were closed in Paona Bazar and Thangal Bazar area.
‘The buses were fully loaded today. We are still trying to work out the operational costs and a fuller picture will emerge in a few days,’ DSP Traffic Victoria Yengkhom told IFP over phone.
It may be mentioned here that, Imphal’s floating population daily is one lakh plus while the population of Greater Imphal is around five lakhs.
Paona Bazar and Thangal Bazar became a ‘Pedestrian Only’ zone from February 13 from 9 am to 5 pm with a two hour relaxation from 1 pm to 3 pm, while parking facilities were arranged around the main market area. At present, vehicular restriction starts at 10 am and ends at 4 pm.
According to MAHUD officials, the JNURM has a total capacity of 70 passengers including 34 seats. Manipur acquired a total of 11 such buses while only 2 buses were pressed into service for the first time in the interest of pedestrians inside the main market area.