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In a move to take the transport sector to real time digital mode, in the age of navigational mobile apps, the West Bengal government today introduced 'Pathadisha' App and fare smart card in state-run buses. Launching the 'Pathadisha' mobile app, West Bengal Transport Minister Subhendu Adhikary said the launch was part of the initiative of the Vision 2016 of Transport department to provide smart, transparent and simple way of commuting. Like Ola and Uber app-based cab service, where a commuter can verify the position of an approaching vehicle, 'pathadisha' will from now on enable a commuter to see location of a bus, it's next destination, the availability of seats, how much crowded it is inside - in short everything, the minister said. The project, having World Bank and a Korean Green Growth fund as development partners, will also be extended from West Bengal Transport Corporation-run buses in city to two other state undertakings in next six months and will cover the entire state, the minister said. To the announcement of World Bank representative that several private bus operators were also being given mobiles with this application on a pilot project under Pathadisha, Adhikary said, "We hope the private operators will realise how much helpful the navigational apps will be in future. "We request them to have the same facility in their vehicles which would help improving passenger amenities, safety of private buses and raise their earnings.
We will issue advisories for private buses based on their response." Coming to smart card, Adhikary said the pre-paid electronic transport card will be introduced in 700 buses now and another 300 buses in few months' time. This will stop pilferage in expenses in state transport undertakings, save passengers and bus employees from small change crisis and bring more transparency in the transport system, he said. He said the smart card facility and 'Pathadisha' app will also be extended to the waterways with World Bank as the development partner. The minister further said with the guidance of IIT-Kharagpur drivers of state undertaking will be trained to fulfil the CM's safe drive, save life campaign. Principal Secretary, state Transport department, Alapan Bandyopadhyay said the move was aimed at giving 'real time-24x7 service' to the common man through Pathadisha app and smart card upto Rs 1000 for boarding government buses.
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