The price of compressed natural gas (CNG) is up, so operators of buses, taxis and autos want to hike fares.
While Blueline bus operators have demanded a flat increase of Re 1 in bus fares, auto-rickshaw drivers want fares to go up by at least 50 paise per kilometre.
Indraprastha Gas Limited (IGL), the agency that supplies CNG in Delhi, increased the gas price by Rs 2.10 per kg from midnight on June 16.
The price of CNG in Delhi now is Rs 21 per kg, up from Rs 18.90 per kg.
Public transport operators said the increase in gas price would directly impact their bill, and the government ought to consider revising fares.
“Our earnings have already decreased due to increase in prices of spares. The hike in price of CNG has further reduced our earnings. Our fare should be revised immediately,” said Bhartiya Tipahiya Chalak Sangh president Sobhran Singh Rajput.
Rajput said an auto driver’s spend on fuel has gone up by 15-20 paise per km after the hike in CNG price.
Blueline operators also justified their demand for a hike in fares. Operators said the Delhi government had last revised fares in October 2007.
“Our expenses have increased while there has been no change in our earnings. Our demand for a flat increase of Re 1 is justified,” said Shyam Lal Gola, spokesperson, Delhi Bus Ekta Manch.
Gola said they had taken up their demand with the Delhi government and expected a favourable response soon.
“We will resort to strike and protests if the government does not respond,” said Rashtravadi Tipahiya Chalak Sangh president Virendra Pal.
While Delhi transport minister Arvinder Singh Lovely and commissioner RK Verma could not be contacted, a senior government official said the government had decided to set up a ‘fare committee’.
Only the committee has the authority to revise the fares of public transport system.
“It is, however, a long process and may take a couple of months before a new fare structure is decided,” the official said.