Khetia (Barwani district, Madhya Pradesh): With Madhya Pradesh state transport authority having temporarily suspended bus services to and from Maharashtra, people of Khetia and Khed Digar villages are facing difficulties.
The decision to suspend bus services with Maharashtra was taken by Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan during a review meeting in view of coronavirus and it will be in force till March 31. However, private buses will continue to ply.
Notably, both the villages are divided by a nullah. The nullah not only divides the two villages but Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra as well. The village towards Madhya Pradesh is known as Khetia while small part of village situated towards Maharashtra side is known as Khed Digar.
Villagers from Khetia say that a large number of their relatives reside in Maharashtra side of the village and vice versa. Khetia village holds importance from transportation point of view as interstate buses services are available for Maharashtra and Gujarat from here.
Bus drivers and conductors deployed on interstate buses here said Madhya Pradesh government has temporarily suspended bus services. As a result, buses coming from Maharashtra are returning from Khed Digar and buses going from Madhya Pradesh to Maharashtra and Gujarat reach up to Khetia.
Since no bus is moving from Madhya Pradesh to Maharashtra and a vice-versa, passengers have to walk up to 800 metres to board a bus. The villagers have to pay extra to travel by private buses.
The government has directed officials in border districts of the state to place passengers coming from Maharashtra in a week-long quarantine. Barwani distrct administration has imposed Section 144 of Cr PC, which bars more than four persons to gather at one place in the district amid a surge in coronavirus cases. The district administration also said that action will be taken against those not wearing masks.