Special Correspondent

State Government is stated to be examining their plea

Two corporations have a burden of Rs.120 crore

The corporations plan to buy 1,000 buses this year

BANGALORE: The Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) and the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) have sought a steep increase of 18 per cent in the bus fares, and the State Government is stated to be examining their plea.

This increase has been sought irrespective of the recent reduction in the sales tax on petrol and diesel announced by the Government.

Both BMTC and KSRTC have informed the Government that they have been shouldering a burden of Rs.120 crore since the last increase in fuel prices. The two corporations have said that they had not increased the fares in the past two years though prices of petroleum products had been increased several times.

It is said that the marginal decrease in the sales tax announced by the Government has marginally benefited the transport corporations, but to save them from incurring losses more relief is needed.

The sources said that if the bus fares were not increased, KSRTC, NWKRTC, BMTC and NEKRTC would incur losses. The corporations are hard pressed for resources and they have also planned to buy 1,000 buses this year and 9,000 buses more over the next five years. Twenty per cent of the vehicles owned by the four corporations will be decommissioned in the near future. On private buses hired by these corporations, the sources said that the arrangement had neither helped the corporations nor the bus owners. Many of the vehicles taken on lease had been decommissioned. The rest would be returned to their owners, the sources added.

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