PANCHTHAR, June 11: A bus station in Phidim meets all the requirements of a standard bus park having ticket counters, security posts, public toilets, waiting lounges and other basic facilities but unfortunately it has no vehicles.
It has been four years since the bus station was inaugurated in Phidim-2, Pallotar. Nine locals had offered land two decades ago for the construction of the bus park. The then chief district officer of Panchthar, Kosh Hari Niraula, had inaugurated the bus station on April 14, 2013. But even after so many years of inauguration, the bus station has not yet come into operation. Instead, it has been rather used as a platform to conduct promotional activities and programs.
Candidates of various political parties are using the bus station for their election campaigns. “The area separated for buses is being used as a stage for mass gatherings,” said Prem Ojha, a local.
Phidim -2 is hometown to many political leaders but none of them had until recent shown any concern for the operation of the bus station.
But, all of a sudden the same station has become a political agenda for election campaign. Candidates are trying to woo the voters by assuring them of operating the bus park after the elections. According to the candidates, the absence of qualified representatives is one of the reasons behind the delayed operation of the bus station.
Since a few months, the station has been decorated with colorful lights and flowers. Political parties have been organizing various programs and inviting the locals to listen to their speeches.
Though it received little bit of attention due to the elections, no party has genuinely shown concern for it yet, informed the locals. Neither any of the government bodies have given due attention to this problem.
Road connectivity has increased the number of vehicles here but none of them follow traffic rules. Haphazard parking has made traffic management really challenging here. This has also invited risk of accidents. Locals are still doubtful that the bus station will be given the same attention after the elections.
Gurudatta Subedi, acting chief of Phidim Rural Municipality, informed that he will be taking initiatives for the operation of the bus park after the elections. “We will add more infrastructures and bring it into operation,” he said.