BMTC saddled with Rs 300-cr loss, says govt

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launch of BMTC -I Wont Honk Volvo buses_June 27_2014_002Bengaluru: Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy said the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) is facing an accumulated loss to the tune of Rs 300 crore.

A loan of Rs 384.50 crore has been raised from three banks in the last one and-a-half years to purchase buses to meet the demand by commuters for additional services.

Replying to a host of questions by the members in the Legislative Assembly on Thursday, he said the increased cost of fuels, upward revision in salaries and spare parts have led to losses. The salary component has gone up by Rs 745 crore from 2008, he added.

The loan raised for the last one-and-a-half years from HDFC Bank is Rs 84.50 crore, Canara Bank – Rs 250 crore and Syndicate Bank – Rs 50 crore.

In the same period, 1,028 buses were purchased spending Rs 319.14 crore. During 2013-14, Tata, Ashok Leyland and Volvo buses were purchased but from April 14 to October 14, only Ashok Leyland buses were bought.

To a question whether Volvo AC and other luxury buses have been causing losses to the corporation, he replied in the positive.

Marcopolo, Carona and Volvo buses in 2014-15 (up to October) have caused a loss of Rs 3.54 crore. In 2009, 98 Marcopolo buses were purchased and they have been causing losses and are going to be scrapped.

However, Volvo bus service has been very popular, especially among employees of IT/BT sectors. From 2009-10 till 2012-13, these buses were making profits. But in 2013-14, the Centre increased the  prices of fuel and spare parts. So Volvo buses have been facing losses.

Reddy said BMTC continuously made profit from 1998-99 to 2011-12. But in 2012-13, the loss was Rs 147.95 crore, in the subsequent year it was Rs 147.59 crore.

“However in current year, the profit has been Rs 12 crore. If we achieve break-even, that is sufficient,” he said.

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