‘Maitree’ service suspended

AGARTALA, Sept 24  – Agartala-Dhaka bus service has been temporarily suspended following torching of India’s ‘Maitree’ passenger bus by a mob at Narsingdi in Bangladesh on Friday.

“The Agartala-Dhaka bus service has been suspended temporarily after Maitree was set afire by miscreants in Narsingdi. It would resume after an inquiry and repairing of the old bus,” Tripura Road Transport Corporation (TRTC) Managing Director Rabindra Reang said. The bus was reportedly torched in a case of mistaken identity during a political clash in the area.

A two-member team of TRTC would leave for Narsingdi, 70 km from here, tomorrow to lodge a formal complaint with the police there and conduct an inquiry into the incident, Reang said, adding, ‘Maitree’ is insured and an inquiry was necessary to make a claim for the insurance.

‘Maitree’ plies from Agartala to Dhaka on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, while a Bangladeshi bus, ‘Shyamali’, shuttles on the rest of the days, except on Sundays.

Following the suspension, no bus would leave for Dhaka from here from tomorrow, but the service of ‘Shyamali’ would continue, TRTC sources said.

The authorities had to discontinue the service of ‘Maitree’ due to lack of spares as the only other spare bus was currently under repair, the sources said.

Meanwhile, the driver and his assistant of ‘Maitree’ returned here yesterday and reported to the authorities that the passengers had reached their destinations on Friday.

The Agartala-Dhaka bus service started in September, 2003. Before that, the Kolkata-Dhaka bus service was introduced in July, 1999.