Maha: Bus service to Ajanta Caves stopped due to bad roads

Aurangabad Dec 1 (PTI) The state-run bus service from Maharashtra's Aurangabad city to the world famous Ajanta Caves has been stopped due to poor condition of the key connecting road, an official said on Sunday.

The pothole-ridden road has been posing problems for tourists to visit this popular UNESCO world heritage site comprising around 30 rock-cut Buddhist cave monuments, located in Aurangabad district.

The incomplete widening work of the Aurangabad-Jalgaon highway and heavy rains during the monsoon this year have turned the commute between the two cities and to the caves a nightmare.

'Buses are not plying to the Ajanta Caves due to poor condition of the road. We stopped this service from November 1,' Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporartion official in Aurangabad S A Shinde told PTI.

For the convenience of travellers, the state transport department was till now running two air-conditioned buses to the heritage site from the Aurangabad central bus stand, located 100 km away.

'But, due to the poor road conditions, these buses are not heading to Ajanta anymore,' Shinde said.

He said a road survey was underway and if its report comes out positive, they will resume the bus service.

Tourists from across the globe prefer the state-run buses to visit the Ajanta Caves, but these irregular services were affecting the number of footfalls, said Jaswant Singh, head of the Aurangabad Tourism Development Foundation, a local body of tour operators.

'If private operators can run the buses on this route, why can't the government agencies do so?' he asked. PTI AW GK GK