Bengaluru: The Karnataka government will now send the free bicycles distributed to high school students to Ludhiana in Punjab for quality check. The government received several complaints from parents and students regarding the poor quality of bicycles that have been distributed. The decision to conduct quality checks was taken after this incident.

10 cycles will be randomly picked from Bengaluru, Mysuru, Belagavi and Kalaburagi and will be sent to the Research and Development Centre for Bicycle and Sewing Machine. The centre is an autonomous institute equipped with laboratories that helps governments and the industry to meet technological and
quality requirements.

According to reports, 40 random samples will be sent to Ludhiana in total.

The primary and secondary education officials were directed by HD Kumaraswamy to scrap the free bicycle scheme of the government after complaints against the poor quality of bicycles became very common. A decision was later taken to conduct quality checks on the bicycle instead of scrapping the scheme completely. As part of the initiative, the government began an inquiry to streamline the process and send the bicycles for quality checks.

The government has also laid out certain requirements for procuring bicycles for school students.

The new bicycles will be picked randomly and sent to Ludhiana while the block and taluk-level Department of Public Instruction (DPI) officers will inspect the vehicles before handing them over to students, reports said. In case of any defect in the vehicle, the bicycle will be sent back to the distributor.

One out of a fleet of 25,000 bicycles will undergo a crash test.

The government has mandated the use of BIS-certified material for handlebars, tubes and spokes of the cycles.

BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa launched the free bicycle scheme in 2006-07 when he was the chief minister of Karnataka. It was primarily directed towards girl students, who traversed through hilly regions and rough terrain without proper modes of transport. The scheme was later extended to boys.