The fare hike effected by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation for non-AC services has expectedly hit the working, middle class and lower-middle class hard.
Many bus commuters here expressed their disappointment at having to shell out more than what was set aside in their travel budget so far, thus impacting their spending on other necessities.
Pinches the pocket
Nagesh K.V., a civic worker, said: “The non-AC bus is the most cost-effective way to travel. Hikes like this greatly impair my ability to get around, as I cannot afford to take autorickshaws. If any more hikes occur while I am at this job, I will not be able to afford public transport.”
Bakery owner S. Manjunatha said: “I understand that the main reason for the hike is the rise in fuel prices. However, this doesn’t change the fact that people’s salaries haven’t changed. I take the bus every day, so even a Re. 1 increase a day will build up over time.”
Said Anoop M., web designer: “The cost of living in Bangalore is already high, and this increase in fares makes monthly expenditure that much higher. I make Rs. 7,500 a month and this hike has pushed the amount I spend on buses daily from Rs. 20 to Rs. 26. So I have to spend more on transport every month.”
Dayananda Sharma, who is unemployed, said he was on a “very tight budget”. “Now, I will have to spend less on other necessities including food, as transportation has become expensive.”
Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly H.D. Kumaraswamy was quick to criticise the hike. “Within a month of assuming office, the Congress government has burdened the common man by increasing bus fares,” he said.