Commuters suffer in Srinagar as electric bus service hit for several hrs due to protest by drivers and conductors

Srinagar,  Commuters in Srinagar faced problems on Monday for several hours after the drivers and conductors of Smart electric buses staged a protest that hit the daily service.

The drivers and conductors of E-buses held a protest on city outskirts at Pantha Chowk, alleging harassment by passengers on a regular basis.

“A conductor and a driver were assaulted by passengers yesterday and we brought it to the notice of administration, who have failed to take any action . We have been repeatedly facing harassment and nobody listens to our plight and today we were left with no option, but to stage a protest,” said a protesting driver at the Pantha Chowk.

However, after long negotiations with the officials, the electric buses were back on city roads.

” After assurance by the officials, we have resumed our work and the electric buses are now operating normally in the city,” the driver said. ” We hope we don’t face any further harassment.”

Due to the protest by the drivers and conductors, the commuters faced a lot of problems in the summer capital on Monday.

“ I was waiting for a long time for the Bus at Hawal chowk, but it never came. I had to face a lot of issues in absence of the E bus service to reach my destination,” said a commuter Mohammad Ashraf.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Srinagar Smart City Ltd, Owais Ahmad did not respond.

The electric buses in Srinagar were launched in November last year by J&K Lt Governor Manoj Sinha under the Srinagar Electric Bus Project and the buses used to operate on intra-city routes and inter-city routes. The service had brought huge relief to the commuters.

In the first 60 days after their launch, nearly five lakh passengers travelled in these buses that are equipped with air-conditioners (AC) and cameras.