Karnataka

Decision on free bus passes for students next week: HDK

H.D. Kumaraswamy

H.D. Kumaraswamy  

State-run transport corporations have objected to the proposed scheme

The Janata Dal (Secular) – Congress coalition will decide on implementing free bus passes for students next week while a decision on providing free education for girls will be taken in the next fortnight, Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy said on Wednesday.

Both the free bus passes for students and free education for girls were announced by the then Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in the last budget of the Congress government early this year.

“We are also thinking about the bus passes. Modalities have to be worked out. We will take a decision on the issue in a week,” the Chief Minister told presspersons here. The free bus pass scheme is set to cost Rs. 629 crore annually for the State exchequer, he added.

Incidentally, the State-run transport corporations have objected to the proposed scheme citing that it would cause strain on the corporations that were already running under loss. Even the Finance Department had not approved the scheme, citing financial viability as a reason.

On the issue of free education for girls from class 1 to postgraduation, Mr. Kumaraswamy said the government would decide on the scheme in 15 days.

Earlier in the day, Transport Minister D.C. Thammanna had said that the government was reviewing the scheme as transport corporations, which had reported ₹500 crore loss, required financial assistance to run the scheme.

Mr. Thammanna said that BMTC and KSRTC, in a first in the country, would open counters to issue bus passes on schools and colleges premises. He also said that the plans were afoot to link websites of Education Department and Transport Department, which would enable distribution of passes easily.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 4:54:55 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/decision-on-free-bus-passes-for-students-next-week-hdk/article24159396.ece

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