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Centre’s decision on JNNURM unlikely to hit transport corporations’ plans

Transport Minister R. Ramalinga Reddy addressing a press conferencein Kalaburagi on Monday.— PHOTO: Arun Kulkarni

Transport Minister R. Ramalinga Reddy addressing a press conferencein Kalaburagi on Monday.— PHOTO: Arun Kulkarni  

Transport Minister R. Ramalinga Reddy has said that the Union government decision to discontinue Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) will not have any impact on the plans to expand the four road transport corporations in the State.

Talking to presspersons here on Monday, Mr. Ramalinga Reddy said that the funds made available under JNNURM had come in handy for the State government to add new buses in Bengaluru and Mysore and also create infrastructure in these two cities. With funding provided in 2014-15, the government was able to add new buses in other cities benefiting the four road transport corporations. However, the Union government will discontinue JNNURM from 2015-2016.

Mr. Ramalinga Reddy said that the expansion plans of the road transport corporations will receive a shot in the arm if the government concedes the long-pending demand of the road transport corporations to waive the Motor Vehicle tax permanently. The State government has now waived Motor Vehicle tax only for the North Western Road Transport Corporation.

He said that the remaining three transport corporations, BMTC, NEKRTC, and KSRTC, remitted around Rs. 350 crore as Motor Vehicle tax to the State government. Apart from this, the State government should release the subsidy amount due to the road transport corporations in lieu of the bus pass concessions extended to various sections of society, to enable the corporations to improve their services.

To a question, Mr. Ramalinga Reddy said that there was no proposal for seeking additional funds from the State government in view of the discontinuation of JNNURM for the expansion activities taken up by the road transport corporations.

Mr. Reddy said that there has been a sharp reduction in losses reported by the four transport corporations and in the next couple of years, the four corporations would make a turnaround.

While losses in the BMTC has come down from Rs. 147 core in 2013-14 to Rs. 52 crore this year, the loss in NEKRTC has come down from Rs. 40 crore to Rs. 15 crore. The loss suffered by KSRTC has come down from Rs. 78 crore to Rs. 40 crore and NWKRTC’s loss has fallen from Rs. 60 crore to Rs. 30 crore.

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