Kathmandu, February 26
Though it has been just five months since the government raised the public transportation fare, the Department of Transport Management (DoTM) has hinted that public commuting could be further costlier soon.
Citing that public transportation fare has not been revised on the basis of non-fuel indicators since long, the department is in the mood to raise such fares soon. Under pressure from transport entrepreneurs amid rising fuel price, the government had raised public transportation fare by 10 per cent in September last year.
“Public transportation fare has been revised only on basis of change in fuel price over the past few years. However, the fare has not been revised on basis of change in price of components other than fuel though their prices have risen in recent years,” said Gokarna Upadhyay, spokesperson for DoTM.
The government’s mechanism to review public transportation fare gives 35 per cent weightage to fuel price and 65 per cent weightage to the price of other components like vehicle cost, price of spare parts, labour cost, price of tyre and other lubricants while reviewing public transportation fare.
As per Upadhyay, a preliminary study has shown that price of non-fuel components has increased over past few years. “The increment in price of non-fuel components will result in hike in public transportation fare.”
The DoTM has formed a study committee to look into the inflation of non-fuel components mentioned above. The department will review the existing public transportation fare on the basis of the recommendation of the committee, as per Upadhyay.
Under existing public transportation fares in cities, including Kathmandu Valley, commuters have to pay Rs 13 for a travel of up to four kilometres, Rs 15 for five kilometres, Rs 16 for six kilometres, Rs 17 for eight kilometres, Rs 19 for 10 kilometres, Rs 21 for 13 kilometres, Rs 22 for 16 kilometres, Rs 23 for 19 kilometres and Rs 24 for distance travelled above 19 kilometres.
Along with revision in the public transportation fare, the department is also preparing to review taxi fare.
A version of this article appears in print on February 27, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.