Pune to Kolhapur ST bus service starts after 1 week

ST Correspondent
Wednesday, 14 August 2019

“The Kolhapur-Pune route is open and working. Hence, buses are coming to Pune from Kolhapur. However, the lanes are still jam-packed as over 18,000 vehicles are stranded there. So, we are not sending buses to Kolhapur at our normal frequency. If passengers demand, we send a few,” said Joshi. 

PUNE: As the floodwater started receding from the Mumbai-Bengaluru highway, the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) started plying buses towards Kolhapur. The transport service between Pune and Kolhapur and towards Bengaluru was suspended due to flooding of the highway near Shiroli village in Kolhapur district for the past one week. Several commuters were stuck in Kolhapur.

According to MSRTC, Pune division, officials, buses started plying to Kolhapur, but the service to Sangli was yet to start. 

Divisional Controller Pune Yamini Joshi said that although, the route opened after a week, jams caused by floods are far from over on the Pune-Kolhapur route.
 
“The Kolhapur-Pune route is open and working. Hence, buses are coming to Pune from Kolhapur. However, the lanes are still jam-packed as over 18,000 vehicles are stranded there. So, we are not sending buses to Kolhapur at our normal frequency. If passengers demand, we send a few,” said Joshi. 

She said the route also sees buses going towards Konkan area, including Ratnagiri. “We also have a high demand for Goa buses but we are not sending them as yet,” said Joshi.

Traffic was halted for over a week as the Panchganga river water flooded the Mumbai-Bengaluru Highway in Kolhapur at Shiroli and Kini villages. Buses coming from Belgaum to Kolhapur were stuck near Nipani on the highway. On Sunday, water started receding and relief material was sent to Kolhapur. Later, the service from Pune to Kolhapur resumed.

Swargate ST Depot Manager PL Kamble told Sakal Times, “The first bus, a Shivshahi for Kolhapur, was sent at 6.15 am on Tuesday. The bus was full of passengers. Till evening, around 12 buses started plying. However, the bus service for Sangli could not start due to waterlogging. The service will now continue. Other buses such as Hirkani have also started plying. Buses coming from Kolhapur are full. We are hopeful that the service will continue without any interruption,” he said.

Passengers expressed happiness as the bus service resumed after a week. Vijay Sali, a resident of Kolhapur, was stuck in Pune for a week. He said, “I was in Pune for some work and was supposed to return to Kolhapur on August 9. I got to know that there were no buses and trains for Kolhapur as floods had blocked the highway.”

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