A city bus moving toward Birtamod. (Mahesh Kumar Das/ Republica)
MAHOTARI, Nov 16: Local business of Jaleshwar municipality has been declining since the last four months due to the municipality's decision to operate city buses to connect nearby villages. Although the operation of buses should have helped the business boom, the bus operators plying only on one particular route instead of the initially proposed three routes has been hampering the local business.
"The bus operators are mostly plying the route from Jaleshwar-Birtamod as they can get more customers from there. Even though the plan was to connect the whole city with the villages, we find that most of the buses are just plying this particular route as there is more profit here," said Mehttari, a local businessman.
According to local businessmen, the customers who used to buy from them earlier are now opting to buy their stuff from Birtamod, a market near Nepal-India border, as they can get much cheaper commodities there.
The municipality initially started operating three buses from July 8 with the aim of connecting villages around Jaleshwar with the city. But now, all six of its buses are plying the route of Jaleshwar-Birtamod only.
Expressing disappoint at the city bus service, Jaleshwar's chief representative of Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry Kripa Shankar Shah said that if the buses had been plying their initial routes, that would have helped maintain local businesses.
The chief of Jaleshwar Municipality, Bhanu Bhakta Baral, said that he has been informed about this issue of buses not plying their initial routes. He said he is going to have a meeting with the bus operators, the local representative of FNCCI and other concerned stakeholders to find a solution to this issue.