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November 26, 2018

Metro fares to go up by Rs10


November 26, 2018

Rawalpindi : Punjab government has decided in principle to increase Metro bus fares across the province by Rs10. Now the passengers will be required to pay Rs30 for their travel in the mass transit system in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad like rest of the province instead of earlier fare of Rs20.

A senior official of Punjab Mass Transit Authority (PMA) on condition of anonymity told ‘The News’ that government has decided to increase fares of Metro Bus Service (MBS). “The passengers would pay Rs30 against Rs20 for travelling in Metro Bus Service (MBS),” he added. Punjab government will issue notification of revised fares in a couple of days, he claimed.

The provincial government was giving Rs1.9 billion in annual subsidies to the PMA to maintain the metro bus fare at Rs20 per person from Rawalpindi Saddar to Pakistan Secretariat in Islamabad, which is a 23km route.

It is worth mentioning here that PTI government has already decided to end subsidies on fares of Metro Bus Service (MBS).

The Provincial Finance Minister Makhdoom Hashim Jawan in a statement issued on October 18, 2018 said that we have decided to end subsidies on fares of MBS.

Punjab Mass Transit Authority (PMA) General Manager Uzair Shah said the government has not issued a notification for increasing the metro bus fare between Rawalpindi and Islamabad yet.

He said the present system was ideal as it facilitated passengers and also ensured smooth operation. Public was happy with this cheaper source of travelling, he said.

Over 100,000 passengers are travelling through Metro Bus Service (MBS) here in Rawalpindi and Islamabad on daily basis have strongly opposed government decision regarding ending subsidies on fares.

Sidra Mumtaz, a working woman said that Rs1.9 billion subsidy is not a burden on the national exchequer as it benefits the people travelling through Metro Bus Service (MBS). The PTI Chairman Imran Khan promised to provide relief to public, but it seems that he was trying to snatch even bread and butter from poor public,” she denounced.

Shahid Minhas another commuter said that we are happy with this fare of Rs.20 to travel through Metro Bus Service (MBS). Why PTI government trying to create financial difficulties for public, he said. PTI government is fully trying to bring public on roads. In first 100 days, PTI government has completely failed to deliver in any filed, he strongly denounced.

According to official data, the then federal and Punjab governments almost equally shared the Rs44.8 billion project cost. Of it the Rawalpindi section cost around Rs19.17 billion and the Islamabad section Rs23.84 billion.

The total length of the Metro Bus Corridor is approximately 23km, including 8.6km elevated, 10km at grade and four kilometre trench.

Sixty-eight air conditioned buses for the service are operating by the Turkish firm Albayrak selected through international competitive bidding, and transport an estimated 135,000 passengers daily.

The monopoly of private transporters had ended with the arrival of Metro Bus Service (MBS) here in twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad. Particularly ladies and old people are enjoying this source of travelling with flying colours because this was a safe, sound and cheaper source of travelling.

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