Body building work in KSRTC hit

Lack of trained personnel, supplies causes delay

Lack of adequate trained personnel and failure to ensure supplies as per specifications have slowed down the body building work of Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses being carried out in five units across the State.

As many as 220 chassis are lying idle in various workshops, KSRTC sources told The Hindu .

Capacity

The central workshop at Pappanamcode here and the regional workshops at Mavelikara, Aluva, Edappal, and Kozhikode have the capacity to roll out 120 buses every month.

The central workshop of the corporation can roll out 70 buses, Edappal 20 buses, and the other three units 10 buses each every month.

But only 65 buses have been released from these units since November last.

Deadline may be missed

These buses are part of the order placed through e-tendering by the KSRTC with three companies for 1,350 chassis.

The corporation has set an 18-month timeframe for rolling out the 1,350 buses and it is almost sure that the deadline will be missed.

Workforce

The KSRTC management says lack of adequate welders and blacksmiths and job hopping by skilled workers after gaining experience at the workshops have affected the work.

Compared to the 900-plus personnel on the rolls in the central workshop at Pappanamcode a few years ago, there are only 454 to take care of body building work now.

Only 70 workers

In the Aluva regional workshop, there are only 70 employees.

But the main delay is due to the failure to make available the 2-mm ERWC (electric rewind cord reel) tube for body building.

Safety hazard

Sources say the corporation, instead of purchasing the 2-mm ERWC tube, gave orders for the 50-tonne 1.62-mm tube used mainly for the frame of seats. The 1.62-mm ERWC tube is not used as it is found that it is a safety hazard.

The management has now placed orders for 2-mm tube with the same company to cover up the fault and has decided to use the 1.62-mm tube for railings and for separating cabin.

‘Consignment arriving’

Admitting the delay in the body building work on account of this, officials say the consignment of 2-mm tube is on the way.

“In one-and-a-half months, 65 buses have been rolled out and 55 handed over,” they say.

The orders have been placed for chassis at a cost of Rs.10.42 lakh. In addition, KSRTC needs Rs.8 lakh for body building.

KSRTC In Media – The Hindu

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