New Delhi [India], May 6 (ANI): Stating that public transport may open soon with some guidelines, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, and MSME Nitin Gadkari has assured the bus and car operators of the country that the government is fully aware of their problems, and will fully support them to mitigate their issues.
"Soon the government will try to resume bus transport based on some guidelines. There is a need to resume air, railways, and bus transport as people are stranded. I think it needs to be done," said Gadkari.
He said that he is in regular touch with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who are working overtime to uplift the economy during these difficult days of COVID-19 pandemic, as per an official statement issued on Wednesday.
Addressing the members of Bus and Car Operators Confederation of India via video conferencing, Gadkari said the opening of transport and highways will go a long way in instilling confidence among the public.
He, however, cautioned towards maintaining social distance and adopting all safety measures like hand washing, sanitising, face masks, etc., while operating buses and cars.
Responding to concerns raised by the audience, the Minister informed that his ministry is looking at adopting the London model of public transport, where government funding is minimal and private investment is promoted, the statement adds.
Gadkari emphasised upon adopting their good practices, which will also be economically viable for the indigenous industry in the longer run.
The Union Minister said he is aware of the tight financial condition of the Indian market during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But, he said, all stakeholders will have to work together to combat it. He pointed towards a very good business opportunity being offered by the world industry.
He said the Indian industry should grasp this opportunity to invite those foreign companies to invest with them in India. He expressed confidence that the country and its industry will together win both the battles - the one with COVID-19, and the one with the economic slowdown.
During the interaction, members of the confederation made suggestions for improving the condition of public transport which include extending interest payment exemptions, restarting public transport, extending age, life limit, deferring state taxes, extending MSME benefits, extending insurance policy validity, etc. (ANI)