Safety for Sale: Parents to Buy Safe School Ride for Children
For the safe transportation of children, majority of the school buses have installed CCTV cameras and GPS system. But safety doesn’t come for free. Parents have to pay Rs 200 extra per month as school bus fees.
The new buses have been implemented from August. In addition to the school bus fee which varies from Rs 950 to Rs 1,850 per month, 200 rupees will be charged extra.
Depending on the routes, bus operators are charging Rs 750-Rs 1, 650 compared to the charges varied from Rs 600 to Rs 1,500, last year. The school bus fees have been increased to 21 per cent by SBOA in April.
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The School Bus Owners’ Welfare Association decided to hike the fees claiming that the maintenance charge for the safety measures can cost more. President of the SBOA, Manjit Singh Saini, said, “The hike is reasonable, it should not bother the parents since we have spent over Rs 10,000 on each of the buses to install the cameras and GPS. Parents should know that this system has been implemented for the safety of their children. So, paying Rs 200 extra for their children’s safety is not a big deal.”
Most school bus operates are on contract since the responsibility of hiring lady attendants for the buses came to the private contractor. The contractor will pay only for the lady attendant salary.
Manjith confirmed that lady attendants have been hired for the school bus along with the installation of GPS and CCTV cameras. He said that by August all the buses will be equipped with necessary safety measures.
School heads believe that even local buses need to install CCTV cameras and GPS system. They are of the opinion that auto rickshaws and the Tata Magic mini-vans must be immediately banned because they carry more than 10-15 children.
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HS Mamik, chairperson of Vivek High School, Sector 38, said, “It is the responsibility of the administration to safeguard the local buses also by installing the CCTV cameras and the GPS system.”
Kamlesh Kumar, the director public instructions (Schools) said that women safety can be ensured only with the installation of CCTV cameras and GPS system in local buses.
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