Congress leader Ravi Raju demanded BMC shell out Rs 150 crore for BEST.
Mumbai: The second day of Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) 2018-19 budget discussions saw Congress leaders opposing the proposed fare hike along with demanding a grant from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
Congress leader Ravi Raja said that decades of bad governance, corruption and neglect by Shiv Sena had led to the dire condition of BEST. Later, he, along with his two colleagues, Bhushan Patil and Ratna Mahal, walked out of the meeting as a mark of protest.
Demanding a grant from the BMC, the Congress leaders have asked the BMC to cough up `150 crore to help BEST until it is able to stand back on its feet. “The BMC should help us as transport in the form of bus services is counted as an essential service,” said Mr Raja.
Their opposition to the proposed fare hike is regarding the hike from `6 to `8 for a distance of 2 km. Mr Raja said, “The `8
fare for a 2 km long ride is unacceptable as it would alienate many passengers.” According to the Congress leader, the BEST is unable to recover even 40 per cent of the money spent by the undertaking on the routes that fall under the 2 km slot of short distances.
“The management has revised the expenditure in the budget without telling us. We are also a part of the BEST committee! Hence, I am opposing these changes,” said Mr Raja.