Talks fail, pvt buses to go off roads from Dec 1

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Private Bus Owners’ Association has decided to go on a strike from December 1 even as talks with the State transport department failed today.

The union is protesting against plying of JNNURM buses outside the cities and tax hike.

The association demanded that city buses should be allowed to run within the cities but they should not carry passengers from one city to another.

At present, the JNNURM buses are running in and between major cities of the State, including Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Puri.

The association is also against the State Government’s tax hike decision.

Earlier Commerce and Transport Minister Ramesh Majhi had said the government was trying to resolve the issue.

“The Private Bus Owners’ Association submitted a memorandum to the chief minister and me seeking withdrawal of the proposed hike in tax rates. We are trying to resolve the issue by discussing with the bus owners by December 1,” Majhi said.

Stating that there had been no tax hike in the state since 2005, Majhi said the state cabinet recently decided to increase tax.