Srinagar: Normal life resumed in Kashmir following two-day wheel jam call given by Kashmir Transport Welfare Association (KTWA) against the sealing of Batmaloo bus stand and shifting it to Parimpora. The traders in Batamallo, however, continued to shut their businesses in protest against the government decision of relocating the bus stand. Buses started plying from the morning across Srinagar following the uncertainty as KTWA members had stayed silent on Friday regarding the standoff between them and government over the relocation of the bus stand.
“There was confusion among people since yesterday because we did not know whether transporters were going to continue the strike,” a female college student said. “My father went to check the availability of transport in the morning and he called me to get prepared for the college,” she said.
Sheikh Mohmmad Yousf, the general secretary of the Kashmir Transporters Welfare Association told Kashmir Reader that the association had given shutdown call for mini-buses for two days and that was the reason people witnessed plying them on the roads from Friday morning. “The strike was not aimed at inconvenience to commuters. Our concerns are genuine,” he said.
Yousf said that a deputation of transporters met the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and apprised her about various problems being faced by the transporters of the valley. “We discussed with the Chief Minister about the issues being confronted by them during the shifting of Batamaloo bus stand to Parimpora,” he said.
A press statement said that the transporters suggested various plans to decongest traffic on some critical routes and also induction of some new technologies in urban transport. “Mehbooba Mufti assured the deputation that their suggestions would be taken into consideration while formulating policies on urban transport. She also assured them to look into the problems raised by them considerately,” the Spokesman, KWTA said.
Yousuf said that if government does not solve the issue brought into the notice of the chief minister by transporters then they would call for indefinite strike. “The land available at Parimpora is not worth fit for bus stand as it can only accommodate 80 buses, 80 mini buses, 80 cabs and 40 autos,” he said.