Rains cut off passenger, goods movement to TN

Bengaluru (dhns): Rains in Chennai have badly hit passengers from Bengaluru travelling to the Tamil Nadu capital, besides the transportation of goods to and from the City.

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Buses, trains and flights to Chennai have been cancelled in view of the heavy flooding there. Private Bus Owners Association president K N Ramesh said a good number of buses were not plying to Chennai and to cities such as Puducherry, Nagercoil, Trichy, Kanyakumari, Rameswaram and other places as well.

“The roads are closed and there is no way to enter Tamil Nadu. Goods and services have been affected. Fresh stocks will not be taken from here, as there is no rain-free place to unload the goods in the coastal city. We won’t be carrying anything till the situation changes. We hear there’ll be rains for three or four more days in Tamil Nadu,” Ramesh said.

This will cause a mild loss to the private bus sector, he added. Buses from Nagarahole and Bandipur to Chennai, via Bengaluru, too have been halted. Buses heading to Chennai and to Bengaluru via Hosur were also impacted by the rains, according to reports.

The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) too will suffer moderate losses. Senior officials said the KSRTC was plying four buses per day against the normal six. This is happening because the number of people travelling to Chennai has come down in the last one week. People are scared by the flood situation in Chennai and have postponed their trips.

The number of buses plying may decrease further if rains in Chennai continue. As for goods and services, officials say, the KSRTC has an arrangement with a private party which will take care of the matter.

“They take goods periodically from us, therefore the rains may not affect us. It is passenger movement that worries us. We have to wait for about four to five days to assess any losses to the corporation,” a senior official said.

KSRTC has not cancelled services even to the coastal cities in Tamil Nadu such as Nagapattinam, Rameswaram, Tirunelveli, etc. The Railways has cancelled one train to Chennai on Wednesday – the Brindavan Express which was to leave the City at 3 pm. On freight traffic, a senior official said there may be a minor impact as about three rakes (trains) may not ply if the rains get heavier in the next few days.

The official said: “The Bengaluru division is basically passenger-oriented. Ninety per cent of the trains coming in are passenger trains, 10 per cent are goods and services trains. The incoming freight is more than the outgoing freight. There will be a delay of three to four days in goods and services,” he claimed.

All flights from Bengaluru to Chennai were cancelled on Wednesday after the Chennai airport issued a flood notice. The Chennai airport was fully flooded on Tuesday and Wednesday. Even cargo flights were cancelled.
Goods and services

Chandra Lahoti of the Wholesale Markets Association said the major vegetable affected by the rains was green peas and to some extent urad dal.

“We get around five truckloads of green peas at our market here in Bengaluru per day. That has been affected as the lorries are not transporting green peas. We will have to wait for a week for the situation to improve. Rice is transported to Chennai from Raichur, Davangere, Koppal and so, the impact on the Bengaluru side is minimal.

“We don’t majorly trade with Chennai. Our share of trade with Chennai is less than one per cent,” Lahoti said.

It has been reported that farmers in Tamil Nadu have paid advance money to farmers in Karnataka for purchasing rice. What was Rs 1,000 per quintal is now being sold at Rs 1,600 per quintal.

Flower traders hit
A good quantity of flowers that Bengaluru gets comes from parts of Tamil Nadu. The rains have affected the supply to a great extent, say vendors in KR Market.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Divakar, Flower Merchants Association, said about 75 per cent of the flowers such as jasmine, Crossandra infundibuliformis (Kanakambaram), lilly, tuberose (Suganda Raja) come to Bengaluru from Tamil Nadu.

“Due to the rains, both quality and quantity have been affected. Since the flowers are not in good condition, rates have remained the same despite high demand,” he added.

Medical products, including tablets and equipment, are also supplied to Chennai from Bengaluru. A representative of a medical company, who did not want to be named, said the company was to supply certain medical equipment to a hospital in Chennai, but could not do so as the truck was stuck on the Chennai border owing to the rains.

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