Mumbai to get 1000 state transport buses to ease burden on BEST due to Covid 19
The bar on common passengers’ entry into Mumbai locals has increased the pressure on BEST buses in Mumbai.Updated: Oct 01, 2020, 11:33 IST
In a move to ease commuting woes in Mumbai, Brihanmumbai electric supply and transport (BEST) will be hiring 1000 buses from Maharashtra state road transport corporation (MSRTC) for operation on congested and long routes including Thane and Navi Mumbai.
The move is aimed at reducing the increased pressure on BEST buses, built up due to restrictions on the number of passengers allowed inside each bus and the bar on general commuters’ travel in suburban trains, which are running limited services only for essential services staff due to the threat of infections posed by coronavirus.
Currently 200 MSRTC buses are being operated on BEST bus routes in the city, starting from Thursday.
The Brihanmumbai municipal corporation (BMC) on Wednesday stated that the buses will be hired as per a decision taken by the BEST administration in a meeting chaired by municipal commissioner Iqbal Chahal.
“The buses will be operated throughout the city. Passengers travelling by the BEST buses have increased substantially after the unlock (phase) and more buses are required to ease the load.” said a senior BEST employee.
BEST has a fleet of 3,400 buses that operate within the city. BEST bus service resumed in the city on June 8 under the state governments’ ‘Mission begin again’. Only 30 passengers are allowed to travel in the buses including 25 sitting and five standing passengers.
Queues and overcrowding inside the buses have been witnessed resulting in the authorities deciding to add additional buses to the existing fleet. The MSRTC has a fleet of over 18 thousand buses.