Fleeced by taxis, long-distance commuters wait for bus and train services to resume

With the State government easing e-pass issuance, people are hoping that the government would resume bus and train services immediately as they were forced to spend more on hiring a car for long-distance travels.
Representative image
Representative image

Chennai

After extending the lockdown with more relaxation till August 31, the State government eased the e-pass following the stern opposition raised by the political parties and public. Many people from the city, who went to their native places in the districts following the lockdown imposed on March 24, are finding it difficult to return in the absence of public transportation.
The government has allowed the offices to increase the staff strength to 75 per cent and industries and shops were slowly limping back to normalcy. In the absence of the bus and train services, people who wanted to travel in an emergency were being fleeced by the car drivers. “I had to travel to Vellore from my native in Coimbatore following the death of my father-in-law last week. I paid a car driver Rs 16,000 for the round trip. Some drivers had even demanded Rs 20,000. It is daylight robbery. The car drivers are fleecing the public,” lamented S Kathiresan.
S Anandan, a government employee from Tiruvallur, said that he was forced to travel on his two-wheeler to the city in the absence of the train services. “I have been travelling in the suburban train for work for the last 15 years. Due to the COVID-19 lockdown, the train and bus services continue to remain suspended leaving thousands of people living in Tiruvallur district and beyond to travel dangerously in two-wheelers to their office in Chennai. Due to the long journey, I have developed a back pain,” he said.
A senior official in the transport corporation said that the bus services would be resumed whenever the government givens permission. “Commuters will be asked to maintain social distancing in the buses and wear masks compulsory,” the official said.

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