Source : PTI | Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Sunday inaugurated electric city bus services in Panipat and announced that people will get to travel free of cost on these buses for seven days. Three electric buses have been introduced in the city and five more will be added to the fleet soon, according to an official statement.
Inaugurating the service from the new bus stand in Siwah, Khattar said the objective of this initiative is not only to provide convenient transportation to the people of the state but also to reduce environmental pollution.
He announced that travelling on these e-buses will be free for the first seven days and encouraged people to opt for public transport over private vehicles.
According to the official statement, the service routes will be carefully planned, taking into consideration the demands and needs of residents.
The fare will range from INR 10 to INR 50 and the route will cover a distance up to 30 kilometers, it said.
After launching the service, Khattar said the city bus service will be systematically expanded to villages surrounding the city.
He said that after the launch of e-bus services in Panipat and Jagadhri, the government aims to start similar services in seven cities — Panchkula, Ambala, Sonipat, Rewari, Karnal, Rohtak and Hisar — by June 2024.
Khattar, who also holds the portfolio of finance, in his budget speech for the fiscal year 2023-24 had announced that city bus services would be initiated in nine municipal corporations and Rewari city.
According to the statement, the existing city bus services in Gurugram, Manesar, and Faridabad will be expanded.
The chief minister said that every day 11 lakh people travel in Haryana Transport buses to various destinations covering a distance of 11 lakh km.
He further shared that significant work has been done in the past nine years to enhance road, rail and air connectivity in the state.
He reiterated that a Rapid Rail Transport System, similar to the metro, will be initiated from Delhi’s Sarai Kale Khan to Panipat, with efforts to expand it up to Karnal.
Alongside the Kundli-Manesar Expressway, Haryana is also launching the Haryana Orbital Rail Service, enhancing connectivity from Kundli to Panipat. This development aims to provide better transportation facilities for the people, he said.
At the event, Transport Department principal secretary Navdeep Virk apprised the chief minister that new bus stands for electric buses will be built in three-acre plots in each of the seven cities of the state at a total cost of INR 110 crore, and they will be equipped with charging facilities.
Later addressing a “Jan Samvad” programme in Karnal, Khattar said that care homes for the elderly will be opened in every district, each having accommodation facility for 50 senior citizens.