For the second time in less than five months, PMPML is set to hike bus fares, which will come into effect today.
The transport body has secured the approval of Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) over the matter. Basically, commuters will have to pay a rupee extra for every stage of the journey.
The ticket price remains the same for the first two kilometres. From the second stage onwards, rates will be raised by Re 1, and on 18 routes outside the limits of Pune Municipal Corporation, there will be an additional one-rupee hike for each stage of the journey.
The increase will be applicable for the pass system also. For senior citizens, the daily pass will be by costlier by Rs 10, a weekly pass by Rs 50, a student’s monthly pass by Rs 100, and the same amount for a monthly pass outside the limit of PMC. The fare for the ‘Pune Darshan’ bus has been increased by Rs 100 for non-AC and Rs 130 for AC.
PMP Pravasi Manch, a representative body of commuters, has strongly criticised the fare hike. “Diesel price rise being cited as the reason is very misleading. Why is PMPML not purchasing diesel from market at competitive rates? MSRTC is already doing that. PMPML can save Rs 13-14 per litre, which translates into Rs 10 lakh daily.
The organisation is not making any efforts to increase its revenue. Average number of passengers per bus per day has reduced to 781 in November 2012 from 955 in August 2012. This hike will result in a further reduction in the number of travellers.”