Karnataka State-run public transport corporations – Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) and Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) – are demanding adequate funds from the government to install CCTV facilities in their buses.
The state transport corporations (STUs) are in the process of adding CCTV in the buses following a Central government notification, which makes it mandatory to install GPS, CCTVs and emergency buttons in public buses and state-run road transport corporations like BMTC and KSRTC.
According to the Central notification, "Testing and certification requirements of the vehicle location tracking device, alert button and CCTV-based surveillance system shall be in accordance with such standards as may be published by the Central government by notification in the official gazette. All devices shall be fitted by the manufacturer or their dealer or the respective operators."
BMTC buses ply within Bangalore while KSRTC is the state-wide bus operator. KSRTC even operates its buses to destinations in other states like Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.
According to sources, BMTC has already started installing GPS systems and has called for under the Nirbhaya Scheme to install CCTVs in its buses. The corporation has also sent a detailed proposal to the central government on the cost for installing CCTV in its buses.
According to Ekroop Caur, managing director, BMTC, the corporation is in the process of implementing the government rule. BMTC has sought a fund of Rs 103 crore to install CCTVs for which a detailed proposal has been sent to the Central government.
Currently, BMTC has a fleet of around 6,400 buses which serves around 52 lakh passengers every day. KSRTC, which operates 8,136 buses, is also in the process of following the rules.
Rajender Kumar Kataria. managing director, KSRTC, said, "Installation of GPS does not cost much but CCTV is an expensive affair. It costs anywhere between Rs 40,000 to Rs 50,000 for installing CCTV for each bus and to build infrastructure. Karnataka is way ahead of others in following safety rules.”
Around 29 lakh people travel in KSRTC buses every day. Put together, both state and private operators operate around 40,365 buses in Bangalore city alone and 86,143 buses ply across the state. Meanwhile, some private operators have already installed CCTVs in their long-distance buses.