Karachi: A private company is all set to start operating ten Green Buses under a pilot project from Malir Cantonment to Saddar Karachi. The Governing Body members of Karachi Public Transport Society (KPTS) headed by Sindh Transport Secretary will inspect the Green Bus on February 21 before according approval of its operation.
The buses, manufactured by an Indian company Ashok Leyland in Dubai, were imported a few years back but were seized by Pakistan Customs that later sold 16 buses through auction to a Bahrain-based businessman Arif Mumtaz.
The businessman will operate initially a fleet of ten buses on 9B express route from Malir Cantonment to Saddar via University Road and Gulistan-e-Jauhar. The actual route of the bus service was up to Tower but it has been restricted to Saddar because of congestion at M. A. Jinnah Road. The buses on other routes would be operated after success of pilot project. The buses, having capacity of 75 passengers, could be operated on CNG as well as petrol.
The buses would start operating within two weeks after getting approval of KPTS Governing Body during which all other matters including fare and security issues would be finalized. Sources told PPI that the new bus operators have desired deregulated fares to make the service viable and sustainable.
The bus operators are currently holding meetings with Pakistan Army officials for security concerns.
Businessman Arif Mumtaz, his company’s director Abdul Waheed Punjwani and Tariq Mumtaz, chief executive of Dammam-based Abdul Hadi Abdullah Al-Qatani & Sons group of companies are also expected to be present at the time of inspection of Green Bus on February 21.
The Dammam-based company has signed agreement with Arif Mumtaz to invest further and operate 3000 buses across the province.