Pune: A year after demonetisation, the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) passengers are still using cash instead of debit or credit card to make payments. However, MSRTC officials are claiming that they are earning Rs 32 lakh on an average through online ticket and Point of Sales (POS) machines which are already installed at ST stands in Pune.
The Pune division of MSRTC has installed 14 machines at four stands i.e. Swargate (5), Shivajinagar (5), Chinchwad (1) and Pune station (3). And 13 new POS machines which work on cards will be installed soon at all these stations including some small and busy stations in the district.
According to the officials of MSRTC Pune division, 14 POS machines have been installed in February this year and many passengers are booking tickets and paying through cards. But the reality is different, Sakal Times has found that the machines are available at the counter but passengers are paying cash to buy tickets and the counter staff are not asking them to make card payments.
Swargate ST stand
Ankit Gawande (31), a medical representative, was going to Chiplun for official work. He was standing at the ticket counter of Swargate ST stand and paid Rs 100 for his journey. When asked him about why he is paying cash instead of making a card payment, he replied he doesn’t prefer card payment. “It’s a short journey and when the ticket is only Rs 100, why use a card? Even during the journey, I have to use cash,” he said.
The official of Swargate ST stand said, “The passengers don’t want to make card payment. Those going to Mumbai book their tickets and make payment online but here when we ask passengers to pay through card, they prefer cash. We can’t force them to make card payment but accept cash payment.” In Swargate ST stand, the department has installed five POS machines and all machines are not in use here.
Many passengers come to Pune station to go to Mumbai. There are three POS machines and all are used by Shivneri passengers. The official said that passengers who use semi-luxury or luxury buses to go to Mumbai or other places don’t use cards and only pay by cash. The ticket counter staff don’t even ask the passengers to make card payments and passengers are happy to pay cash and book their tickets.
The situation at Shivajinagar stand is same like Pune station and POS machines are only used by passengers travelling by Shivneri Volvo buses. The staff claim that passengers don’t know how to make card payments and many times, they forget their password. Hence, they are asked to pay in cash.