MSRTC to add over 7,000 new buses to its fleet

Published on Nov 19, 2022 12:19 AM IST

Chief minister Eknath Shinde has approved taking 5,000 electric buses on lease and buying 2,000 diesel buses in the annual general meeting of the state-owned undertaking on Friday. It was also decided to convert 2,000 diesel buses into liquefied natural gas (LNG) in phases

Pune, India - April 15, 2022: Number of MSRTC buses increased as employees resume duty after strike at Swargate ST Stand, in Pune, India, on Friday, April 15, 2022. (Photo by Ravindra Joshi/HT PHOTO) (Ravindra Joshi/HT Photo)
Pune, India - April 15, 2022: Number of MSRTC buses increased as employees resume duty after strike at Swargate ST Stand, in Pune, India, on Friday, April 15, 2022. (Photo by Ravindra Joshi/HT PHOTO) (Ravindra Joshi/HT Photo)

Mumbai: The state government has decided to go for a makeover of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) by adding 7,000 new buses to its fleet.

Chief minister Eknath Shinde has approved taking 5,000 electric buses on lease and buying 2,000 diesel buses in the annual general meeting of the state-owned undertaking on Friday. It was also decided to convert 2,000 diesel buses into liquefied natural gas (LNG) in phases.

Earlier, an approval was given for 2,000 e-buses, which has been increased to 5,150 buses, a release issued by the chief minister’s office (CMO) stated.

Shinde also approved in-principle to take a loan from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for procuring buses, including those to be taken on lease. All these electric buses will be air-conditioned. The officials were also directed to reduce the ticket prices on the existing fleet of air-conditioned buses, said an official.

The decision to buy 2,000 diesel buses was taken due to non-availability of chassis for CNG buses and low number of CNG pumps.

MSRTC employees to go on strike from Dec 20

MSRTC employees, who went on a strike from October 2021 till April this year, have called for another indefinite strike next month.

Earlier, the employees had put forth 18 demands before calling off the strike, and the MSRTC had given an assurance that 16 would be met. With no concrete decision, the employees have called for a protest at Nagpur on December 20, a day after the beginning of the winter session of the assembly.

“For most of the demands that we put forth, responses have been that it will happen gradually or will be done soon. It has been over six months and it is high time to take concrete decisions on the same. The state government will be responsible for further consequences of the strike,” said Gopichand Padalkar, chairman, Seva Shakti Sangharsh State Transport Workers’ Union.

The previous strike was forced to be called off after the Bombay high court directed the employees to resume their duties.

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