Basaveshwara Bus Terminal at Peenya has proved to be a costly white elephant for the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC). The Corporation had tried to give it another lease of life by shifting 60 bus schedules from Majestic in April this year, but has taken a decision to withdraw the services as they were not financially viable.
S R Umashankar, Managing Director of KSRTC said demand for the services shifted to Peenya had not picked up. “We have not calculated the financial loss the Corporation has incurred because of shifting services from Majestic. It was not viable to operate services. So, a decision was taken to withdraw the services and operate these buses from Majestic,” he said.
The KSRTC had invested Rs 40 crore to build the bus terminal. The Corporation had first started services from the terminal in 2014 by shifting 140-odd schedules from Majestic. However, within a few months, KSRTC shifted all operations back to Majestic as it had incurred a huge revenue loss.
An official of KSRTC at the bus stand said, “In 2018, we re-started operations from the bus stand to various destinations in 20 districts, including Davangere, Shivamogga and Chitradurga. But just about three-four people used the services from this point.”
To increase the footfall, the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) pitched in by operating buses from or via the terminal to various destinations in the city. That too received a lukewarm response from the people.
“The BMTC had started 80 trips from this bus stand, but due to poor ridership, the number was reduced to 10 trips,” said a KSRTC official.
In the past, the authorities had come up with various plans to increase footfall at the bus stand, but they remained only on paper. For instance, there were proposals to integrate Peenya metro station with the bus stand, operate shuttle services, and even opening a multiplex to attract people.
When asked about the future of the bus terminal, Umashankar said, “We have tried everything possible as of now. Now we have to look for out-of-the-box solutions.”