You will soon be able to track your Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking buses on your mobile phone. The agency is planning launch the service this month. Commuters will be able to track the location of the bus and if it has been cancelled or is stuck in traffic. The undertaking is also considering reducing the minimum fare for the first 6km, which is currently Rs14. “The mobile app linked to the control room will help commuters ascertain the location of bus and accordingly plan their trip,” said Jagdish Patil, BEST chairman.
The system will be also linked to digital indicators at the top of all bus stops that will denote the expected time of arrival using global positioning system (GPS). The number of commuters using BEST buses has gone down from 45lakh to 30lakh and the agency has been trying different ways to change this.
“It is observed that maximum (70%) commuters travel from their homes to the railway station. This average distance falls in the 6km slab, which is why we are mulling reducing the fare.” said Mohan Mithbavkar, BEST chairman.
In the past, BEST reduced its air-conditioned bus fare and also announced happy hours during which commuters of regular buses can commute for half the price of the daily bus pass.
Besides, the undertakin1g is also planning to lease 100 buses from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) to increase their fleet. “Although we are planning to lease buses from the MMRDA, we are not privatising our services,” said Mithbavkar.