To tackle passenger rush, state-owned Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) will add 60 new air-conditioned Volvo buses to its fleet by June 15. Most of these buses will ply on the Dadar-Pune, Borivli-Pune and Thane-Pune routes; six new Volvos and two Jumbo buses will run between Mumbai-Pune within 10 days.
“New buses are being added because we have seen a tremendous growth in the number of passengers on these routes,” said Deepak Kapoor, vice chairman and managing director of the corporation.
Passengers travelling by the road transport corporation’s AC buses, known as Shivneri, have increased by 37% in 2010-11.
Two jumbo multi-axle buses, which have 53 seats that mean 8 seats more than the normal Volvo buses, will run between Dadar-Pune on experimental basis. The ticket rate of these buses will be same as the regular AC bus — Rs 280 per person.
“The jumbo buses have more capacity and more legroom and are comfortable for commuters. We have planned to come up with a new brand like ‘Shivneri’ with the jumbo buses as well. More jumbo buses will be added to the fleet, depending on the success of these two buses,” said Kapoor.
According road transport corporation official, the demand for AC buses has increased between Pune-Nashik and Aurangabad- Pune routes.
The MSRTC is planning to introduce 15 new routes in April, which is its peak season across the state.