Passenger fare revision: Govt drags feet, SRTC rules out reduction

Ignoring the repeated demands from stakeholders and general public, the Jammu and Kashmir government seems to be ‘uninterested’ in revising passenger and freight fare to extend benefit of steep decline in fuel prices to the masses.

Ignoring the repeated demands from stakeholders and general public, the Jammu and Kashmir government seems to be 'uninterested' in revising passenger and freight fare to extend benefit of  steep decline in fuel prices to the masses.  

The State Transport Authority claims to have submitted 'recommended' proposal to the state government. 

Talking to Greater Kashmir RTO-Srinagar, Mehboob Ahmad Shah said the department had already submitted a proposal to the government regarding various reforms in the state transportation.

"We have submitted a proposal concerning fare revision to the Transport Commissioner, who has further forwarded it to the state government," said Mehboob Shah, who is also a member of State Transport Authority.

Similarly, RTO-Jammu, Ashwani Khajuria said, "We have also submitted proposal concerning fare revision to the transport commissioner, ten days back."

He added that they have submitted a 33-point cost-in-operations proposal to the government which also includes fare revision as an important factor. "The proposal was submitted keeping in view the aspirations of the people," he said.

"After taking suggestions from civil society, transport unions and social organization, we drafted a proposal regarding fare revision and same has been submitted to the government by the state transport commissioner," said he.

Pertinently, after decline in fuel prices and public outcry for fare reduction, Transport Commissioner had instructed three RTOs of Jammu, Srinagar and Lakhanpur to come up with a proposal regarding fare revision. An official in Transport department wishing anonymity said the State Transport Authority had submitted the proposal to the government with certain percentage of fare reduction.

"I am not sure how much fare would be reduced, but department has sought at least 10-15 percent of reduction," the official said.

However, SRTC-General Manager (operations), RS Jamwal ruled out any possibility of fares being cut down, saying it is illogical to reduce fare, as fuel prices keep on fluctuating.

"The revision is not possible, as such decisions are supposed to be taken when fuel prices remain stable for longer time. We don't support fare reduction, as the fuel prices can rise again," he said, adding let the fuel price remain stable for some time, only than this discussion would become viable. 

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