KARACHI: The test drive of first ever electric bus service has started on Monday in Karachi under 2nd Phase of People’s Bus Service.
The test drive was conducted between Sindh Archives Complex to Seaview. Minister Information, Transport and Mass Transit Sharjeel Inam Memon, Minister for Labor Saeed Ghani, Adviser to Chief Minister Sindh for Prisons Ijaz Khan Jakhrani, Administrator Karachi Barrister Murtaza Wahab, MPA Imdad Pitafi, Secretary Transport Abdul Haleem Sheikh, Managing Director Sindh Mass Transit Authority Capt: ( R) Altaf Hussain Sario and others traveled in the test drive and inspected the facilities in the newly arrived electric buses.
Speaking to the media on this occasion, Sharjeel Inam Memon announced that proper electric bus service will be open for public in 10 days after the completion of it’s of test drive.
He said that Karachi is lucky city of Pakistan that test drive of first ever environment friendly electric buses service has been launched today.
He said that those routes would be finalized, having less traffic for these European standard electric buses. The survey on routes is simultaneously underway and soon will be decided.
He said that public transport sector faces huge challenges of throughout Pakistan adding that Sindh government is endeavouring to solve the public transport in Sindh and provide modern and comfortable commuting facilities to its citizens.
The minister added that transport department of Sindh government is taking full ownership of all public transport projects. It is our priority that all public transport projects in Karachi and other major cities completed on time.
He said that the company working on electric buses project had assured that it would bring solar energy system to charge these buses and in this regard solar energy centers would be established .
He said that initially 50 electric buses have arrived Karachi. We are trying to set up a manufacturing plant of electric buses in Karachi, in this regard, negotiations are under process with Chinese, European and a local companies.
He said that they were working to invite 2 or 3 top international public transport companies to establish their plants in Karachi which will also boost the development of province as well create new employment opportunities.
He said that electric buses cost double as compared to hybrid diesel buses in import. Buses would be available on lower rates locally with the setting up of manufacturing plant in Karachi.
Replying to a question, the minister said that the roads of Karachi are being improved; work is under way on the roads damaged by recent rains.
He said that Administrator Karachi Barrister Murtaza Wahab is personally monitoring all the development works, while Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah has extended full support in this regard.
On the directives of Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Sindh Government of Pakistan People’s Party, Local Government Department and KMC are focusing on the development of Karachi.To another question, he said that the fare of People’s Bus Service is Rs. 50, only Rs. 100 is fixed for Gulshan e Hadeed route which is longest route of People’s Bus Service.
Apart from this, the Orange Line fare is also reasonable. He said that the fare of all these buses is less compare to fares of private transport while service is also best. He added that people’s bus service had gain tremendous response of the citizens.
He announced that fare of electric bus service will be less than these buses. On this occasion, Project Director NRTC Sohaib Shafeeq briefed that 12 meter long buses have 32 seats for general citizens and 2 seats for special persons.
While 35 to 40 extra people can travel in the bus. The total capacity of bus is 70 to 90 persons. These buses are charged in 20 minutes and are capable of covering a distance of 240 km in a single charge. ‘ A charging system has been installed at UP Mor Bus Depot ,’ he added