From next month onwards the general public will have to shell out more for travel by bus, auto or taxi with state Transport Minister Antony Raju on Wednesday announcing that the recently increased fares would come into effect from May 1. Raju, speaking to reporters, said requisite orders would be issued soon for implementing the hiked fares from next month.
With the hike in bus, auto and taxi fares coming into effect from May 1, the government will get some time to constitute a commission to examine whether student ticket prices should be increased. The LDF government in Kerala on March 30 had announced that it has decided to hike minimum fares for travel by buses, autorickshaws, taxis and quadricycles.
The government had said that it has decided to increase minimum bus fares from Rs 8 to Rs 10 and subsequent per kilometre charge to Re 1 from 90 paise and to appoint a commission to examine the issue of increasing the student ticket rates. Private bus owners had demanded increasing the minimum fare of the general public from Rs 8 to Rs 12 and the subsequent per kilometre charge to Rs 1.10 from 90 paise.
They had also wanted the minimum student fare to be increased to Rs 6 and were, therefore, dissatisfied with the government’s decision to appoint a commission to examine this issue. The owners of private buses, who had gone on strike seeking an increase in minimum fares for normal passengers and students, did not welcome the proposed increase in rates, saying it was not sufficient for them to continue providing their services.
The state government on March 30 had also decided to increase the minimum auto fares to Rs 30 for two kilometres as against the existing rate of Rs 25 for one-and-a-half kilometres. Thereafter, Rs 15 would be charged for every subsequent kilometre as against the existing Rs 12 per km. Regarding taxi fares, Raju had said that for cars with engine capacity of less than 1,500 cc, the minimum rate would be increased to Rs 200 for the first 5 kilometres, from the existing rate of Rs 175 for 5 km.
Thereafter, Rs 18 would be charged for every subsequent kilometre as against the prevailing rate of Rs 15 per km, he had said. For vehicles with engine capacity more than 1,500 cc, the minimum rate would be increased to Rs 225 for the first 5 kilometres, from the existing rate of Rs 200, and thereafter, Rs 20 would be charged for every subsequent kilometre as against the prevailing rate of Rs 17 per km, he had said.
Minimum fares of quadricycles would be hiked from Rs 30 to Rs 35 and the per kilometre charge would be increased from Rs 12 to Rs 15, the minister had said. However, there will be no changes to the existing waiting and night travel charges, he had added.
(Edited by : Anand Singha)