The Tamil Nadu Transport Department has announced that it will operate around 3,000 additional buses from Chennai to help those who are travelling to their hometowns to cast their votes for the Assembly election on April 6. These buses are scheduled to depart from Koyambedu Mofussil Bus terminus (CMBT), from Thursday to Saturday.
As per reports, these buses will drop passengers to the major transit points in the city -- Madhavaram, Poonamallee, Tambaram and KK Nagar. Passengers can board their long-distance buses from these transit points. The state government will operate 2,264 special buses from Coimbatore, Salem, Tirupur and Bengaluru to ensure that there is no congestion. Passengers heading towards Andhra Pradesh can board their buses from the Madhavaram terminus, whereas voters heading to Arcot, Arani, Vellore, Hosur, Cheyyar and Kancheepuram will have to board their buses from Poonamallee depot.
Passengers travelling towards Cuddalore and Chidambaram will have their boarding point at KK Nagar and those who are travelling towards Thanjavur, Kumbakonam, Neyveli and Tiruvannamalai will board their buses from Tambaram. Other buses to the rest of the state will start from CMBT, the statement said. The department will also run around 2,100 special buses to help voters return to Chennai after voting. In the rest of Tamil Nadu, the government will operate 1,700 odd buses to help people travel to cast their votes.
In 2019, just before the Lok Sabha polls, the AIADMK government came under massive flak for not arranging transport options for people queuing up to go to their hometowns to vote. Scuffles broke out in various bus boarding points across the state, with the police resorting to mild lathi charge in Koyambedu. Many passengers also reported that the buses were inordinately delayed due to congestion and that they were stranded in the terminus without proper information. Even in train stations in Chennai, massive crowds were reported due to people lining up to travel to their hometowns without adequate trains to ferry them.