Pune: City-based activists have raised concern over the cramped ways in which school children are ferried in buses, vans and auto rickshaws. They have demanded that Regional Transport Office (RTO) should conduct regular drives to prevent school vehicles carrying excess students.
Speaking about the issue, Prashant Inamdar, convenor of NGO Pedestrian First, said, “Vehicles, mainly auto-rickshaws and vans are seen carrying children far in excess of vehicle capacity. Also, children are made to sit behind the rear seat with their backs to the windshield of the rear door of van, which is dangerous.”
Many people have also stated that children are seen travelling on the footboard of school buses. In the case of rickshaws, school bags are seen hanging outside the vehicle body, causing unsafe conditions for the vehicle as well as other traffic on road, they added.
“Apart from this, vehicles carrying children are seen driving rashly, violating traffic rules. They are seen over speeding, jumping traffic signals, etc,” added Inamdar.
Many have raised concern that this scenario highlights the fact that transport operators continue to ferry students in a risky manner.
Inamdar emphasised that the RTO should regularly conduct surprise checks on the road on a random basis.