Stalin hits at AIADMK govt for private buses’ fare surge ahead of Diwali
Thousands of people from Chennai will be travelling home to other parts of the state to celebrate the festival of lights.Updated: Oct 26, 2019, 23:41 IST
DMK president and Tamil Nadu’s leader of opposition MK Stalin on Saturday slammed the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) government for not stopping private bus operators from raising ticket fares ahead of Diwali.
Thousands of people from Chennai will be travelling home to other parts of the state to celebrate the festival of lights.
“Many private buses are collecting four times higher the rate when compared to the ordinary season,” Stalin alleged in a tweet.
The DMK chief also accused that the leaders of the ruling party have a nexus with private bus operators and so allow the illegal fare hike.
“Even many transport department officials want to stop these breach, politicians associated with the ruling party are complicating the officials. People should not be disturbed or exploited while they are heading to their natives,” Stalin said.
State transport minister MR Vijaya Bhaskar said the state government is operating more than 7000 special buses from Chennai to various parts of the city. He said around 400,000 people have used the special bus services from Chennai since Thursday.
“The government has operated about 7321 special buses to tackle the festival season rush. Four lakh passengers have left for their native places from Chennai,” he said while speaking to reporters.
Even as the minister said these special buses were enough to ferry people, several travellers said they will have to travel on private buses. Many also complained that private bus operators have increased the ticket almost four times.
“I am working in an IT firm in Chennai. When I checked private bus tickets on apps to go my native Trichy for Diwali, many two-seater AC buses have increased the fare to Rs 1500. However, the usual fare between Chennai and Trichy (331km) is just Rs 500,” B Manikandan said.
“Even some operators are forcing passengers to pay Rs 3000. It is the possible fare for making an air trip from Chennai to Trichy. Bus ticket booking apps including Red Bus, TicketGoose also showing the heightened fare,” he added,
When contacted the customer support team of Red Bus, they claimed they are not responsible for the fares.
“Fares are being fixed by the operators. We have no role in fixing the fares. We are just an intermediator between the operator and passengers,” a customer service executive said.
The transport minister warned private bus operators against raising the fares.
“If any private operators are demanding a huge price, passengers could raise a complaint with the transport officials. The government would cancel the license of such offenders,” Vijaya Bhaskar said.