KSRTC’S Volvo city bus fleet climbs to 46

Commercial Vehicle - - NEWS / CV MONITOR -

Ac­cord­ing to sources six Volvo city buses are ready to be added to the Ker­ala State Road Trans­port Cor­po­ra­tion’s (KSRTC) fleet of 40 buses at Kochi. If an­other four lowfloor city buses are pressed into the fleet, the city will ful­fil the quota of 50 low-floor buses alloted to it un­der the Jawa­har­lal Nehru Na­tional Ur­ban Re­newal Mis­sion (JNNURM) scheme. In the case of semi-low floor buses, Kochi has to buy two more buses to ex­haust its fleet strength quota of 120 un­der the scheme.

Sources in­formed that apart from the six pro­cured buses, two more Volvo buses are expected to start ply­ing in the Fort Kochi to in­ter­na­tional air­port route over the next two weeks so that KSRTC has a bus em­bark­ing on the route ev­ery hour. Mean­while, an­other im­por­tant route that is wit­ness­ing heavy de­mand for AC buses is route be­tween Mat­tancherry and Perum­bavoor. For this route, KSRTC aims at re­duc­ing the fre­quency of AC buses from four hours cur­rently to about two hours. Not only that, there were also plans to beef up night ser­vice buses from the city to subur­ban towns.

Even as the state trans­port depart­ment is in­tro­duc­ing more buses, sources said that it was fac­ing dif­fi­cul­ties in earn­ing the break-even mark of Rs 50 per km on sev­eral of its JNNURUM bus ser­vices. Ex­perts said that the hike in diesel prices is the chief rea­son for this is­sue. Sources in­form that fuel ex­penses have gone up by about Rs 800 per day, while the fares for JNNURUM buses have not been re­vised dur­ing the past two bus-fare re­vi­sions.

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