Karnataka cabinet meet concludes – CM BS Yediyurappa allows KSRTC buses, trains within state; BMTC buses to run from tomorrow

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BENGALURU: Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa chaired a crucial Karnataka cabinet meeting at the central hall in Vidhana Soudha today. The meeting was expected to finalize the lockdown 4.0 new rules in the wake of Union Home Ministry notification issued yesterday extending nationwide lockdown till May 31. The most important aspect was to take a decision on the BMTC services in Bengaluru. 

From the highly placed sources, DNN has learnt that Transport Minister Laxman Savadi opposed resuming of the BMTC services in the city. Even the transportation department officials too have suggested to the chief minister BS Yediyurappa to continue the lockdown as per the central government’s guidelines. The overall opinion, it is understood, is that to avoid Covid-19 situation go out of control, it is desirable to adhere to all the guidelines as issued by the MHA notification. 

In the meeting, KSRTC bus services and interstate train services were permitted. BMTC bus services will also run from tomorrow with restrictions such as only 30 passengers and mandatory masks, social distancing norms to be followed stringently.

CM BS Yediyurappa also allowed all shops to open except malls, theaters, bars and restaurants etc. Parks will also be open for public.

Developments Before the Cabinet Meet:

With the Centre clearing the path for resumption of public transport services and passenger vehicles within and between states, the Karnataka  government is set to operate its fleet of KSRTC and

BMTC buses, besides allowing cabs and autorickshaws to ply, from Monday after a two-month break.

Soon after the ministry of home affairs issued guidelines for Lockdown 4.0 starting on the morrow, CM BS Yediyurappa called a meeting of cabinet ministers and high-ranking officials to decide on any additional measures to be taken by the state government. However, Metro Rail will not run until further notice.

“All decisions pertaining to new measures will be issued after the meeting on Monday,” said deputy CM Laxman Savadi. Before the MHA announced the guidelines, the state government issued an order extending the existing lockdown norms for the next 48 hours.

Savadi, who holds the transport portfolio, said, “We need clarity on certain issues before letting buses and other passenger vehicles operate. I’ll meet the CM on Monday and then the state advisory for public transport will be issued.”

Limiting seats in buses unviable: Min

If social-distancing norm of limiting the seat capacity on a passenger vehicle is strictly implemented, then it won’t be viable for any operator. We understand that it is left to states to decide on the modalities of opening up of public transport,” said Savadi.

The MHA guidelines have relaxed norms for working from offices, adding a clause that said, “As far as possible, (the) practice of work from home should be followed.

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