‘Surajya Abhiyan’ questions passengers’ loot by transporters during Shri Ganesh festival time

When will the Government take action against the ‘Online booking App’ ? : ‘Surajya Abhiyan’ asks the Government

On the occasion of Shri Ganesh festival, lakhs of Shri Ganesh devotees left for their hometowns. Taking advantage of this, Ganesh devotees and passengers were being robbed on a large scale through ‘Red Bus’, ‘Make My Trip’ and other private travel booking Apps. While there is a Government order to charge one and a half times more passenger fare when compared with State Transport (ST) buses, private passenger bus operators charged double, triple and sometimes quadruple fares from passengers.

On the one hand, the Transport Department gave out a WhatsApp number (8850783643) for complaints  so that passengers are protected during the Ganesh festival, in reality today, 80 to 90 percent of vehicle reservations are made Online through private passenger ticket booking Apps. However, it is seen that the State Transport Department is not paying attention to it. The Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Mr Eknath Shinde, should take initiative immediately to eliminate the problem of Online looting of Shri Ganesh devotees”. A demand to this effect was by Hindu Janajagruti Samiti under its ‘Surajya Abhiyan’.

An application in this regard was made to the Transport Minister and Chief Minister, Transport Secretary, Transport Commissioner.

Due to continuous struggle and followup for the past few years, the Transport Department did issue complaint numbers and passenger fare sheets at some places. Some years ago, as per an order of the Bombay High Court, the Transport Department had issued a Government order increasing the fare by one and half times; but this was not implemented for many years. Complaints were lodged with the Transport Department through State-wide agitations and campaigns against it through the ‘Surajya Abhiyan’. A representation was made to the then Transport Commissioner Dr Avinash Dhakne. Discussions have been also going on with present Transport Commissioner Mr Vivek Bhimannavar.

Navi Mumbai Sub-Regional Transport Department announced the Government tariff from Ratnagiri to Navi Mumbai only; but what about passengers in other regions ?

Further, under ‘surge pricing’ (when the price of a service is increased with an increase in demand), how come the ticket prices of private buses on Online Apps are quadrupled when compared with the regular ones ? For example Government has fixed a rate of Rs 3.22 per km for Air-conditioned sleeper coach.

While the Government has fixed a fare of Rs 1,214 for the 380 km journey from Mumbai to Kolhapur. But actually Rs 4,850 is being collected for this route. The situation is similar in other places too.

Hence, instead of keeping different fares on websites or Apps of private travels, orders should be issued to keep fares one and a half times the Government approved fares. We demand that the violators of these rules should be booked and the licenses of these private companies should be revoked. This demand was made by Mr Abhishek Murukate (State Coordinator for ‘Surajya Abhiyan’).

(For more, please visit : HinduJagruti.org)

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