With the recent hike in the petroleum prices, commuters who use public transport have once again found themselves at the receiving end. In an immediate reaction to the hike, the owners of most commercial vehicles in the capital have started charging more. Surprisingly, it’s not only the diesel or petrol run vehicles. In view of the increasing pollution in the capital and the frequent shortages of petroleum products, the government introduced, in recent years, environment-friendly battery-operated vehicles (Safa tempos). But when it comes
to fleecing passengers they do not seem to be far behind, either. While the transport entrepreneurs have thus been raking in profits, it’s the local commuters who always have had to bear the brunt of the syndicate system of fare fixing.
Fuel price hike or not, transport entrepreneurs have time and again hiked fares. The passengers have been left with no other choice, but to pay according to their demands, as the authorities have neither been able to fix a standard fare nor have been able to introduce government-run public vehicles on a full-fledged basis. Furthermore, the price fluctuations depend on the whims of vehicle owners instead of real increase in the cost of operating transport system. The ministry and the agencies concerned should take steps to ensure that fares rise only when these are justified by the rises in the cost of operation, and the ratios of the two should also match.