Two new Volvo AC buses join BEST fleet, 48 more by March
The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking (BEST) on Monday inducted two air-conditioned Volvo buses in its fleet. The new Volvos will add to the undertaking’s fleet of 4,700-odd buses.Updated: Nov 30, 2010, 01:26 IST
The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking (BEST) on Monday inducted two air-conditioned Volvo buses in its fleet. The new Volvos will add to the undertaking’s fleet of 4,700-odd buses.
The ceremony was conducted in Bandra (East), with Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray inaugurating the two buses.
The BEST committee had cleared the proposal to induct 50 new air-conditioned Volvo buses in its fleet, in a meeting two months ago.
“It is my duty to provide good quality buses to the people of Mumbai,” said Sanjay Potnis, chairman, BEST Committee. “Volvos would be a good addition to the fleet. In 2007, the BEST Committee had passed the proposal to introduce these buses, but due to administrative red-tapes we couldn’t go ahead.”
The remaining 48 buses will be added to the BEST’s fleet in a phase-wise manner by March 2011, said Potnis.
Thackeray, while refraining from commenting on the controversial King Long AC buses started in 2007, said: “There is no political intention behind inaugurating these buses. But, it is worth mentioning that after double-decker and single-decker BEST buses, these automatic Volvo buses would be a good addition to the bus fleet,” he said.
Over the past few years, the BEST introduced 272 King Long AC buses to its fleet. Soon after, the undertaking started receiving complaints about these buses due to its frequent breakdowns, incidents of engines catching fire, among other things.
However, the newly acquired buses have a special feature that allows the driver to lower the boarding height of the bus by pressing a button. “This would help senior citizens who often face problem while boarding or alighting out of a bus,” said Thackeray.
All 50 buses are to be leased to the BEST free of cost by a private firm, Asian Concierge. “We would be giving them advertising rights on these buses for the next 10 years. It is not possible for BEST to buy Volvo buses as it doesn’t fit in out budget,” said Potnis.