Soaring fuel prices prompts KSRTC to mull over fare hike

Soaring fuel prices prompts KSRTC to mull over fare hike

Beset by the financial burden caused by increased diesel prices, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) is planning to propose a hike in fares to avoid losses in the future.

Senior KSRTC officials told DH that the expenditure on diesel, which crossed Rs 70 a litre last week, had gone up by Rs 70 lakh per day. “As a bulk buyer, the corporation gets a discount of Rs 2 a litre. But, the steady increase in the prices is flooring us.”

Adding to the expenditure are the revised salary and the 26% hike in the dearness allowances for employees. “Together, the salary and the hiked DA will come to about
Rs 100 crore. The annual expenditure is set to increase by more than Rs 370 crore,” an official said.

When asked about the amount of hike in fares, KSRTC Managing Director S R Umashankar said they were still making calculations. “Diesel prices have soared. We are planning necessary measures.”

Senior officials also refused to divulge the percentage of hike. They said everything was dependent on the state government. “KSRTC does not take a call on its own. We are waiting for the induction of Transport minister who will be able to take our case forward. The corporation has emerged from losses of Rs 177 crore last year, and quick measures are needed to avoid further losses now.”

Any hike proposed by the KSRTC will also apply to the two corporations offering public transport in the north-west (NWKRTC) and the north-east (NEKRTC) parts of the state. The Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) is also coming up with a separate proposal.