Bus fare hike evokes criticism from commuters

'The government has been wooing the rich and suppressing the poor'

Frequent increase in diesel prices and increase in other operational costs have forced the transport corporations to increase the fares by 10 per cent. The hike of fare of Rajahamsa and express buses have affected poor passengers.

About 75 per cent of the population resides in rural areas in the district. The KSRTC operates bus services to these villages.

The latest revision of fares has angered daily commuters, who are largely from poor and unorganised sectors. They have questioned the rationality behind not hiking the fares of AC volvo buses. The public said that the government has been wooing the rich and suppressing the poor.

To come to terms with operational cost, the transport corporations should not make passengers to bear expenses.

They should improve their revenue collection through other sources. By maintaining timings, maintaining buses and bus shelter clean, the corporations can attract passengers, the public said.

A few residents said that the transport corporations should follow the model of railways. Without hiking the fare, the railways have been managing the show till recently. They have found out other alternatives to improve their revenue collection.
Kushalnagar resident Shivu said “the Congress government came to power last month. Increasing the fare to increase its revenue collection is not right. The railways had increased their revenue by offering goods services, increasing advanced booking fare and others. Similar model can be emulated by the transport corporations.”

Kalkesh of Madikeri said “the state government has decided to distribute rice at Re 1/kg to poor. It has banned gutka. The hike in fare will affect daily wage workers, who had already been on a tight budget. Now they will have to spend a far larger share of their income on bus fares in the prevailing poor economic situation.”

Shilpa said “hiking the fare of Rajahamsa and express services is condemnable. The government should have also hiked AC, volvo buses.”

Another residentPushpa said “poor who can not afford two-wheelers and four wheelers use the services of public transport system. At a time when poor are affected with the rise in price of essential commodities, how can they survive?” she asked.

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