Express news service
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Sunil SS, originally from Karyavattom, provided taxi services to some of the main companies in the Technopark. However, its vehicles haven’t hit the roads since companies launched the work-from-home system.
Like Sunil, the city’s taxi, rickshaw and bus drivers have been out of work for a year and a half, with technicians starting to work remotely and students taking courses online. As companies slowly consider returning to work from the office, Sunil is now optimistic.
âRelevant authorities from various companies have informed us that they may resume office work in November. We began to prepare for the resumption of our services by installing plastic partitions between the front and rear seats and keeping disinfectants in each vehicle. Although it will take some time to get back to normal, we hope to make up for any losses, âsaid Sunil, who has worked as a driver for seven years.
Sunil is now planning to start maintenance work on its vehicles. âOn top of that, insurance and tax payments will also need to be taken care of,â he says. More than 1,000 rickshaw drivers who have stopped working in the city are also anxiously awaiting the reopening of offices.
âWe still do not know if the employees will be ready to take public transport. But we hope that the reopening of the offices will help bring us business, âsaid Sajith Kumar, a car driver who transported more than 100 employees to and from the Technopark daily.
In the meantime, many drivers in the city are waiting for a response from the authorities concerned to resume their services. As schools and colleges reopen in the coming months, school bus drivers have been given instructions on the safety measures required before services resume.
School authorities doubt the resumption of bus services as vehicles have been kept off the road for a long time and new government guidelines allow only one student per seat. âAlthough the school authorities plan to resume offline lessons from November, they have not yet decided on the transport of the children. I took short walks around town to support my family.
Although all staff have been fully vaccinated, we are awaiting a response from school authorities regarding the resumption of services, âsaid Unnikrishnan KR, a school bus driver for 15 years.