Deputy Chief Minister and Minister for Home and Transport R Ashoka launched the Volvo multi-axle buses of KSRTC with chemical toilets, in-built pantry, live TV and Wi-Fi facility on Wednesday.
The buses with pantry and toilet facilities are called ‘Airavat Bliss’ and buses with only toilets are called ‘Airavat Superia’.
A total of six Airavat multi-axle buses have been procured and will on the operate Bangalore-Chennai and Bangalore-Tirupati routes initially.
KSRTC officials said the buses will also have a live TV facility with a mini television screen attached to each seat, along with ear phones and remote control.
“We have tied up with Integration Consultancy Services and Airtel TV for the facility,” said a senior official. ‘Aircraft experience’
Describing the service, Ashoka said travelling in multi-facility buses will give passengers the experience of an aircraft at a fare of Rs 650 to Rs 750, as compared to Rs 1,200 in a private luxury bus.
For Tirupati buses, the travel fare is Rs 450 to Rs 500 and it is only Rs 50 extra compared to the existing Volvo service.
Ashoka added that the buses will also have a Wi-Fi system where the passengers can pay Rs 15 and get a scratch card from the conductor to use the facility throughout the journey. The Wi-Fi service will be free for commuters for the next two months, he said.
On the food service, KSRTC officials said passengers can choose the preferred food item from the menu available at counters or online while booking the tickets.
“Passengers have to pay an additional price of Rs 125 for the food service and the menu includes pongal, sandwich, fruit salad, fruit juices, coffee, tea etc. Passengers are allowed to use the oven in the pantry to heat the food items,” said Manjunath Prasad, MD, KSRTC.Track your bus
The KSRTC is also launching a service called ‘Track the Vehicle’, wherein anybody can login to the KSRTC website and check the location of any bus on the move.
“The facility will be of great help to families of passengers who are at home or elsewhere. They will be assured that their beloved are safe,” Ashoka said.
As a part of the service, people can also send an SMS to 9243755920, to track the bus.
For this, they have to type: ‘Where are you?’ along with the PNR number mentioned in the ticket. The officials also said for the first time in the country, KSRTC is holding a counselling on the lines of CET for recruiting drivers and driver-cum-conductors. “These staff will be posted to the places based on merit and also as per their choices and options,” said a senior official.
Ashoka also said a total of 4,000 buses will be procured for the State as a whole under various transport corporations in the coming years. “For this year alone, 919 buses including 164 regular and 10 Carona buses will be procured,” he said.