Minister for PHE, Irrigation and Flood and Control, Sham Lal Sharma today informed the House that the Water Transport has been inaugurated in May, 2012. Replying to a question by S. Dharambir Singh Oberio, the Minister informed that the department is not operating its own ferries/boats for public transport. He said that a private agency is operating the transport ferries/boats as per demand of passengers in the river Jhelum.The Minister further informed that no expenditure has been incurred by the department, however, an amount of Rs. 0.60 lakh has been earned as revenue by the department till date by charging Rs. 500 per boat per month.
The Minister further informed the House that the Water Transport Service has been started by a Private agency on trial basis after the department granted NOC for operating the boats.
He said it would soon be regulated so that an effective mechanism is put in place to decide various other parameters.Intervening in the debate, the Minister for Urban Development, Mr. Nawang Rigzin Jora informed the House that it was initially started on trial basis by the Tourism Department and intended exclusively for tourists to provide them river side view of the old city and its heritage.Ghulam Qadir Pardesi, Nayeem Akhtar, Syeed Rafiq Shah, Shiekh Ghulma Rasool, G. N. Monga and Dr. Shahnaz Ganai raised supplementary to the question. (KNS)