Kolkata bus operators demand hike in fares

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Kolkata, Dec 25 (PTI) Claiming that high fuel price and low passenger count owing to the pandemic has left the passenger transport industry high and dry, bus operators in West Bengal on Friday demanded an immediate hike in fares.

Bengal Bus Syndicate general secretary Tapan Banerjee said that a section of private buses has gone off the roads and more are likely to follow suit owing to mounting losses being incurred to run the vehicles.

'High diesel price, low passenger count owing to the pandemic and inadequate fares have pushed the passenger transport industry in the state into the red,' Banerjee said.

Buses on several routes have gone off the roads due to daily operating losses, said Asit Saha, the owner of a couple of buses.

'We are being forced to look for other business options given the situation we are faced with,' he said.

Banerjee said that though the state transport department has formed a committee on fares two months back, it is yet to take any decision on the issue.

He claimed that the state transport corporations get subsidy from the government, but the private operators have no such option to fall back on. PTI AMR SOM SOM