With the Home Ministry easing the 60-day lockdown, Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation(APSRTC) from Thursday resumed the intra-state bus services. Stating that the services would be operated with all necessary guidelines like social distancing and preliminary thermal scanning, APSRTC vice-chairman and managing director Madireddy Pratap said that 1,683 buses (that is 17% of the total services)will run in 436 routes.
However, the buses will not operate in the containment zones amid the lockdown. Buses in all categories like Telugu Velugu, Express, deluxe, ultra-deluxe, super luxury and AC services will be resumed in selected routes. On the safety front, it is necessary for the passenger to wear masks or cover their faces before boarding the bus to curb the spread of Covid-19 infections. It was also notified that seats have been modified in the buses to make sure that social distancing is maintained.
Also, masks will be available in the stalls present there for Rs.10 as well. Also, sanitisers will also be kept at all the bus stands thus passengers must use them as well before starting the journey. Passengers will have to buy the ticket before they board the bus. Online purchase of tickets are encouraged and payment can be made with all e-wallets and UPI based applications. Besides mask and e-ticket, Aarogya Setu mobile app was also made compulsory so they can be tracked in case of any eventuality.
Meanwhile, the bookings which began at 4 pm on Wednesday on the Online Passenger Reservation System (OPRS), the server has been witnessed glitches. “The server remained busy for a while, but the problem was rectified and people can now book tickets,” an official said. In urgent cases, and for those who cannot book online, tickets may be bought at special counters in the bus stations.