Pune: Compared to Mumbai and Bengaluru, two cities where buses are a popular mode of public transport, Pune fares poorly when it comes to the money a commuter has to spend.
Travelling by bus in Pune is an expensive affair as the bus passes issued by the Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) are costlier than those in Mumbai and Bengaluru.
Considered as one of the best transport utilities across the country, the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) in Mumbai and Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) in Bengaluru are providing reliable and comfortable intra-city and suburban transport facility.
The monthly pass for BEST and BMTC can be bought for Rs 1,050 and Rs 1,100 respectively. But the monthly pass for PMPML costs Rs 1,400. BEST charges Rs 150 per month for students till Class X and Rs 300 for those in the higher standards.
Also, Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport provides free bus passes for students of primary schools, while in high schools girls have to pay Rs 400 per month while boys have to pay Rs 600. For higher education, students are charged as per different fields of specialisations. Yet, all these are much less compared to PMPML, which charges Rs 750 per month for students.
The only monthly pass with PMPML that’s cheaper is the one for senior citizens (see table). Activist Rupesh Kesekar said that it is a widely accepted principle that to reduce vehicles on the road, public transport facility has to be made available at an affordable rate.
“PMPML should rework the prices of the monthly pass. If the authority can’t reduce the amount at least they can continue with the earlier fare. Earlier, it was only Rs 50 per day for city daily pass and Rs 70 for out of the city and a monthly pass was Rs 1,200 for the city and Rs 1,500 for out of the city. “It will not affect the burden on passengers,” said Kesekar.