Hyderabad: Several major road mishaps have occurred in recent years in Andhra Pradesh similar to Wednesday`s terrible accident in Mahbubnagar district in which 45 people were burnt alive.
As many as 30 people were killed when a private bus, on its way to the temple town of Shirdi from Hyderabad, fell off a bridge in Osmanabad district of Maharashtra in June, 2012.
In March last year, eight children were killed when a school bus lost control and plunged into a canal in Khammam district.
Road mishaps involving either school children or passenger vehicles get reported from different parts of Andhra Pradesh often.
According to official figures for 2012, road accidents account for 51.9 per cent deaths in Andhra Pradesh against the all-India figure of 37.4 per cent.
Private transport buses carry hundreds of passengers every day in Andhra Pradesh from Hyderabad to different destinations in the state.
Transport officials here said that a vigorous enforcement drive was on, but recent agitations over the issue of bifurcating Andhra Pradesh had impacted the campaign.
The enforcement drive would be conducted again on passenger buses, since the strike by employees has come to an end, officials said.
The ill-fated bus involved in today`s accident had a `No Objection Certificate` and fitness permits among others, officials said.
According to Ramachandraiah, a transport expert here, private buses are not supposed to ferry passengers on highways because highways are nationalised and private buses are usually run as `contract carriages`.
The time has come to de-nationalise roads and bring the operation under a single umbrella so that bus services can be regularised, he said.
Lok Satta Party president K Srinivasa Rao, who worked on problems in the transport sector for more than a decade, said air-conditioned and luxury buses plying in the state have experienced short-circuit problems due to defective insulation and wiring, as well as installation of gadgets like TVs and audio sets beyond engine capacity.
He demanded that the government enforce all safety measures, including speed regulation to prevent accidents.
He also sought a thorough inquiry into the ghastly accident and conveyed his condolences to the bereaved families.