THE UP State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) will introduce a new inter-city bus service—Jan Shatabdi—with 69-seater 100 air conditioned buses from March 1, 2007.
Transport Minister Naresh Agarwal said that the purpose of the new service was to make available the comfort of air conditioned buses to average middle class commuters on concessional rates. He said that about a dozen buses would start plying on different inter-city routs while a total of 100 buses would be available for the new service by April 1 next year. In the first phase, the air conditioned buses would be introduced from March 1 on Lucknow-Lakhimpur Kheri, Lucknow-Bahraich, Allahabad-Mirzapur, Allahabad-Varanasi, Muzaffarnagar-Meerut-Moradabad and Muzaffarnagar-Meerut-Kaushambi (Delhi) routes, he informed.
The corporation has already ordered 100 air conditioned buses. The cost of each petrol-run bus will be around Rs 20 lakh.
In reply to a question, the minister informed that the State Government had made a budgetary provision of Rs 37 crore which would be used for purchase of buses while the rest of the money required for the new venture would be mobilised by the UPSRTC through its own resources, including profits which the corporation had started earning lately.
For the first time, the minister said, 15%, 10% and five% concession would be given if tickets were booked 15 days, seven days and two days in advance while Rs 20, Rs 40 and Rs 50 would be charged on return of tickets 72 hours, 24 hours and four hours before departure.
The fares of the new bus service would be almost equal to the existing Pawan Gold Bus Service of the corporation, he said, adding that for a 100-kilometre journey, the fare in the Pawan Gold was Rs 62 while in the new proposed Jan Shatabdi it would be Rs 61.