This bus driver takes service on same route since 1990

Aadarsh P Anand

Kottayam: Janosh Babuchettan alias CL Babu has been behind the wheels of the bus on the Vellavoor-Changanassery route for a long 32 years. Though buses and their owners on this route have changed, Babu didn’t step down from the driver’s seat.

Babu, who is fondly called Babu Chettan, was the driver of the Cheers bus which started service on this route in 1990. As new buses took to the route, Babu turned driver for the buses ‘Mahadevan’ and ‘Prasanth’.

In 2002, ‘Janosh’, a new bus started service on this route. But the passengers were surprised that their favourite driver Babu was behind the wheels of the new bus. Later, CL Babu became ‘Janosh’ Babu.

Even at the age of 59, Babu is continuing to drive the bus with the same energy.

He has been maintaining a friendship with the passengers by interacting with them and taking them safely to their destination. The new generation is also well acquainted with ‘Janosh’ bus and its driver Babu.

Interestingly, the passengers do not fail to bid goodbye to their favourite driver while alighting from the bus.

From cleaner to bus driver

Babu was only 16 years old when he started working as a cleaner at the taxi stand in Karukachal. While working there, taxi drivers helped him learn driving. The days at the taxi stand groomed him as a good driver. In 1987, he obtained a heavy vehicle driving licence.

He started his job as a bus driver with ‘Jesus’ bus on the Kulathoormuzhi-Changanassery route. Later, he worked in buses on many other routes.

As Vellavoor is a remote place in Kottayam, commutation is a major problem for the natives. Babu vowed that he has the responsibility to take Vellavoor natives to Karukachal and Changanassery and back to the village safely. After taking up the mission, he shifted to Vellavoor 29 years back.

His family includes his wife Jayasree and two sons Anandhu and Amal.

Babu is the sole breadwinner of the family. Even after completing three decades of long service, Babu is always ready to occupy the driver’s seat in high spirits.

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