BMTC commuters observed black day

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BMTCBANGALORE: Daily commuters of BMTC, particularly garment factory workers, daily wagers, domestic helpers and vegetable vendors observed a black day protesting the fare hike by BMTC.

Under the aegis of Bangalore Bus Prayaanikara (passengers) Vedike (BBPV), several groups demonstrated at 10 busiest bus stops and handed over a memorandum to transport minister Ramalinga Reddy demanding a complete roll back of fare hike done during June 2013.

The BMTC revised fares in June by 16pc but after vehement criticism and protests, reduced the fare of the first stage by Re1. But the association is not satisfied and says that a rupee rollback is insufficient. “We observed a black day and demonstrated at the busy bus stations. We have sent our demands to CM and transport minister,” said Vinay Sreenivasa, spearheading the protests.

The demonstrations were organized in Majestic, Shivajinagar, KR Market, Neelasandra, Yesvanthpur, Doddaballapur, Devenahalli, Hebbal, Nelamangala.

Apart from demanding a complete rollback of fares of both BMTC and KSRTC, the BBPV demanded bus fares to be fixed in a way that the corporation does not exceed five per cent of lowest minimum wages fixed by state government and free passes to senior citizens, disabled, school children and Antyodaya card holders. On the other hand, the group also demands more ordinary buses to ensure the whole city is covered well along with the introduction of mini buses to cover slum areas.

The Vedike demanded that BMTC should not build TTMCs and procurement of AC buses should be done with public consent but all bus terminals should be provided with toilets, drinking water and bus stops should have shelters. They have also suggested the government to provide funds to BMTC so that these amenities can be made affordable by withdrawing motor vehicle taxes on buses and diesel, charging on car parking fees and congestion fee and transfer money to BMTC and a corpus fund by sanctioning an amount equal to BMRCL.

The Vedike suggested the setting up of commuters committee at depot levels with equal representation from experts suggested by Vedike and BMTC on issues like sexual harassment of women and children.

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