Mumbai RTOs to crack whip on private buses charging inflated fares
Bus operators could be fined at least Rs 4,00 if found guilty of overcharging.mumbai Updated: Nov 08, 2018 15:54 IST
Amidst a rise in complaints of overcharging for private bus tickets during Diwali vacation, the state transport commissioner’s office has directed its officials to take strict action against private operators demanding excessive fares.
Regional Transport Offices (RTOs) across the state have been directed to conduct random checking of private buses to curtail overcharging.
Besides asking all RTOs to launch a drive, the transport commissioner’s office also made an appeal to passengers to register complaints on the department’s helpline number 02262426666 or on www.transport.maharashra.gov.in
Following directives by the Bombay high court, the state government, in April, fixed the upper fare bracket for private bus operators.
Operators have been allowed to charge 50% more per kilometre as fare compared to the fare by state-owned Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) buses. There is no lower cap on fares.
The transport commissioner’s directive was issued on receiving several complaints about charging operators charging exorbitant fares during peak season; and by taking cognisance of media reports.
An RTO official said that as per the directives from the headquarters, their flying squads have been asked to check the buses randomly.
“There will be maximum rush due to Diwali vacations and the long weekend. Hence, our flying squads have been asked to keep track of charging excessive fares,” the official said.
According to RTO officials, the bus operators could be fined at least ₹4,000 if found guilty of charging beyond the maximum fare limit. MSRTC has already hiked its fares for buses plying between November 1 and November 17 by 10%.
Earlier, in absence of regulations, private bus operators would charge passengers exorbitantly during festive seasons like Diwali, Ganapati, Christmas and New Year’s.
First Published: Nov 08, 2018 15:54 IST