CNG buses incur loss, KSRTC to change routes as

Only one-fourth of targeted revenue achieved in first five days of operation.

Kochi: The state’s first CNG bus, deployed in Vytilla circular route, is running at heavy loss, forcing the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) authorities to think about its withdrawal from the “metro feeder route” and redeploy it in other high demand routes. The bus running on Compressed Natural Gas was expected to collect a minimum Rs 8,000 as daily collection. However, the first five days operation could yield only one-fourth of the targeted revenue. The maiden service will commence from Aluva daily at 6.30 am and the bus will conduct seven trips in the Vytilla Edapally-Kaloor-Menaka-Boat Jetty-Kadavanthra-Vytilla route before the last trip back to Aluva at 5.30 pm.

“On March 22, a single trip was conducted when the collection was Rs 558. The collection figures for the next four days were Rs 2,605 (March 23), Rs 2,784 (March 24), Rs 2,084 (March 25) and Rs 1,756 (March 26). The bus can’t be operated like this. We’ve informed headquarters and requested authorities to re-deploy the bus in demand-routes like Kakkanad,” a senior KSRTC officer said.

“I travelled in the bus during the peak hour. I boarded from Manorama Junction at 9 am and there was only five people in the bus despite the fact that only ordinary fare is being charged. Perhaps if the bus goes to Pararivattom –Kaloor instead of circumnavigating through Edapally, the collection may go up. Currently those travelling to city from Vytilla lose much time by travelling through Edapally,” said Abhijith A. Thomas. Currently the 48-seat bus daily plies 178 km. The bus has a capacity to store 200 kilo CNG. “By filling one time (75 kg), the bus can cover 200 km and can be deployed in long routes, including to high terrain areas, too,” the official said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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