Article originally appeared in expressbuzz

Even a couple of months after the notification asking conductors of every stage carriage to sport nameplates, the rule is yet to be implemented in full force.

Neither has the Motor Vehicles Department put their foot down on the issue nor have the private bus operators initiated concrete steps to ensure that their employees wear nameplates.

Designed to check the behaviour of bus workers, the notification asking conductors to sport their names on uniforms was issued by Transport Commissioner T P Senkumar in June.

Private Bus Operators Association Ernakulam district secretary M B Sathyan told ‘City Express’ that the operators were hampered by the shortage of workers in implementing the rule. “The bus operators are struggling to find workers,” Sathyan said. “In any given week, up to four different people are donning the conductor’s role in some buses. We would have followed the rule immediately if we were assured that there would be continuity in the workers.”

At the same time, Sathyan said that the PBOA was keen to ensure compliance. “We have discussed the matter and efforts are on to provide conductors in Ernakulam with nameplates within a month.”

Meanwhile, the Motor Vehicles Department too is slowly waking up from its slumber. “We are preparing to enforce the rule that conductors should wear nameplates,” Ernakulam Regional Transport Officer T J Thomas told ‘City Express’. “The Motor Vehicles Department has already started inspections on buses in the city. We have been checking both KSRTC and private buses randomly for the past one week.” Conceding that the rule had not been taken seriously so far, Thomas said.

“Not many private bus operators have acted upon the notification. Since the workers keep changing in many buses, we have decided to let them off with a warning for a few days. We have issued notices and within a week, strict action will be taken against those violating the rule. The punishment includes fines and suspension of license.” Meanwhile, setting an example, the Eramalloor-based Vijaya Group has already implemented the rule in their buses operating between Cherthala and Ernakulam.

“We have 11 buses and the conductors have been provided with nameplates. They have been wearing them for the last two days,” manager Anil Isaac said.