Some independent bus operators pilfer diesel. It has come to light that certain private bus operators who are permitted to fill up at the state-run bus service’s depots steal diesel to resell in the black market for inflated profits while not utilizing their vehicles to transport passengers during the crisis.
Private bus operators are allowed to refuel at state-run fuelling stations located next to Sri Lanka Transport Board depots but some of them make undue use of the opportunity to stock fuel privately so that it can be sold for more money. Diesel may be purchased on the black market for up to Rs. 900 a liter.
When questioned about it, Bandula Gunawardane, the Minister of Transport claimed he had taken action in coordination with Moratuwa University to create a computerized system to track fuel distribution at bus depots. Once that isaccomplished, he claimed, it would be easier to control the fuel supplied to private bus operators.