Calling for revamping the transport sector, Minister of State for Science & Technology, and Transport (independent charge), Sunil Sharma, today urged the stakeholders to explore the huge potential offered by Jammu and Kashmir. The Minister was speaking at the opening ceremony of 243rd Standing Committee (Supplies and Contracts) of Association of State Road Transport Undertakings (ASRTU), New Delhi, which was hosted by J&K SRTC at SKICC here. The ASRTU is an apex cocoordinating body of all State Road Transport Undertakings with the Secretary, Road Transport and Highways, Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways as its ex-officio President. The meeting was attended by heads and representatives of State Road Transport Corporations of 18 states including Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan. Welcoming the visitors, the Minister said there is a need of out-of-box ideas to improve the health of transport sector in Jammu and Kashmir. Mr. Sharma said J&K has a huge potential for innovations in public transport system, given the massive influx of tourists and pilgrims who, in thousands, pay obeisance at shrines like Mata Vaishno Devi and Amarnath. Recalling his hometown of Kishtwar, from where he was elected to the State legislature, the Minister said the diversity in landscape of J&K should be fully exploited in order to facilitate seamless integration of remote corners of the State. “We have lost thousands of lives in road accidents. Traffic regulation and management is near to nothing. Our own JKSRTC is on the verge of collapse. In such difficult times, I am hopeful that you will give us some ideas which can be implemented to better the transport management in the state,” Mr. Sharma said. He said the JKSTRC has an important role in pilgrim tourism and its potential will be fully explored in coming days and months so as to fillip the public transport sector of the State.
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