Bus fare reduction from Jan 1

Bus fare reduction from Jan 1

Bus fares in the State will be reduced from January 1, Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy confirmed here on Saturday.

He, however, refused to divulge the quantum of fare cut on the State Road Transport Corporation buses.

Reddy told journalists, “The details are being worked out and the quantum of reduction will be announced in the next two-three days.” Sources said the cut was the result of political pressure, though it was not in the best interest of the transport corporations, which “are already under loss.”

In May last, a 15 per cent hike in Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) bus fares and a 8 per cent hike on Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses was announced amid protests.

In October, diesel price fell by Rs 6.86 a litre, and a renewed demand was made for reduction in bus fares. The proposal will be reviewed by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah before being implemented on January 1.

With the government keen on fare reduction, hopes of the four loss-making state-owned transport corporations to save Rs 146.80 crore overall have been dashed. The KSRTC was hoping to save Rs 53.55 crore.

The BMTC was planning to save Rs 35.88 crore and the other two corporations wanted to save up to Rs 57.37 crore. Diesel price was hovering around Rs 60 a litre in May, but is now at Rs 55. Reddy said the transport corporations had for a long time absorbed the increase in the diesel price, even when it was around Rs 65 a litre.

As per BMTC officials, since the May fare hike, there had been a Rs 3-crore profit till October, the first after grossing nearly Rs 140 crore accumulated losses since 2012–13.

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