Amid the soaring prices of essential commodities and fuel, now is the turn for bus fares as the All Assam Motor Transport Association (AAMTA) has demanded a 70 percent hike in all bus fares of the state including city buses.
The fares are likely to be increased considerably with government approval.
AAMTA General Secretary Prabin Das said that the government has failed to consider the welfare of the transport workers, while the prices of every other commodity associated with their services have increased immensely.
The memorandum of the AAMTA stated that the Central Motor Vehicles Rules 2021, amendment to rule 47 came into force with effect from April 1, 2022. “This has levied additional taxation on transport owners,” Das said. Additionally, toll plaza fees have been increased by 15 percent, and Third Party Premium by 13 percent for this financial year.
“There has been a significant rise in prices of tyres, battery lubricant, spare parts of buses, etc, not to forget the regularly increasing fuel prices,” he added.
The memorandum further stated that the Government had failed to provide the necessary financial support to bus owners and workers who have received a massive blow during the past two years due to the pandemic.
“Our demand for a 70 percent hike in bus fares is not new. But the Government had never paid any heed to our necessities. Now it is becoming difficult to cope with the changing situations and the large expenses,” Das added.
It needs to be mentioned that the current public transportation fares are being ascertained following a notification issued by the Finance Department in 2012. Although the prices were enhanced in a subsequent notification in 2019, the same has not been implemented to date.
The All Assam Motor Transport Association has asked for a well-calculated hike considering all aspects including old fare, rise in fuel price, rise in the consumer price index, and tax rates.