Govt proposes average 14% hike in passenger fares

*Cabinet to take final call today

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Jan 31: State Government has proposed an average 14 percent hike in the fares of the passenger vehicles and a detailed proposal in this regard is being placed before the State Cabinet, which is meeting under the chairmanship of Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah at Civil Secretariat tomorrow at 2 pm.
Authoritative sources told EXCELSIOR that Transport Department with the approval of the Minister Incharge, Ch Mohammad Ramzan has proposed average 14% hike in the fares of the passenger vehicles keeping in view hike in the prices of the petroleum and petroleum products.
“Other parameters like the increase in the cost of chassis of vehicles, fabrication, spares, maintenance and other collaterals like insurance, salaries of drivers/conductors etc have also been taken into consideration while working out hike in the fares”, sources said, adding the proposed hike has also been recommended by Apex Committee after detailed exercise.
It is pertinent to mention here that transporters recently went on indefinite strike but following assurance from the Government that their demand for increase in fares would be sympathetically considered they suspended the same.
For the big buses (stage carriages), the Transport Department has proposed   14% hike over and above the existing fare. Similarly, for medium/mini-buses (stage carriages), a hike of 14% has been proposed.  For the taxi/maxi cabs (base model contract carriages like Sumo, Bolero, Tata Indica, Swift, Tata Winger, Tempo Traveller), the Government has proposed 12% hike.
According to the sources privy to the proposal, for Taxi/Maxi cabs (medium segment tourist taxi/maxi cab contract carriages like Tavera, Scorpio, Qualis, Xylo etc) the Government has proposed 14% hike. However, for the Taxi/ Maxi cabs (premium class tourist taxi/maxi cab contract carriage like Innova and Fortuner etc, hike of 19% has been proposed.  For auto rickshaw (petrol  version) and stage carriage vis Tata Magic (Auto) similar rates like mini buses, hike of 9.8% has been proposed.
“Rates for fixation of per day trip in respect of stage carriages (big, medium /mini buses) for 11 hours with 2 hours break will be Rs 2850 plus fuel for big buses (stage carriages) and  Rs 1350 plus fuel for medium/mini buses (stage carriages)”, sources said.
Sources said that Cabinet will also accord approval to the proposal of Social Welfare Department regarding induction of eight members of J&K Social Welfare (Gazetted) Service to the Time Scale of KAS.
These officers are Ghulam Ahmad, Mohammad Farooq, Sonali Arun Gupta, Atul Gupta, Kanchan Bala, Tsering Paldan, Zubair Hussain and Ritu Mahajan.
“The Cabinet will also accord sanction to the appointment of Nazir Ahmed Mir belonging to the J&K Hospitality and Protocol to the Time Scale of KAS”, sources informed.
As reported exclusively by EXCELSIOR in its January 24 edition, the Cabinet will also discuss the recommendation of high level panel and communication of Minister for Higher Education on opening of new BEd colleges in the State, order promotion of 3 IAS and 69 officials of J&K Accounts Services and give nod for the introduction of two bills seeking amendments in the Jammu and Kashmir Prevention of Corruption Act, 2006 and appointment of ombudsman for investigating the charges of corruption and maladministration in the Panchayati Raj Institutions besides release of 10% DA in favour of employees and pensioners.

Proposed fares

i)    Big Busses (Stage Carriages)    14%
ii)    Medium/Mini Buses (Stage Carriages)    14%
iii)    Taxi/Maxi Cabs  (Base model Contract Carriages like; Sumo,     12%
Bolero, Tata Indica, Swift, Tata Winger, Tempo Traveller etc.)
iv)    Taxi/Maxi Cabs (Medium Segment Tourist Taxi/Maxi Cab     14%
Contract Carriages like; Tavera, Scorpio, Qualis, Xylo etc.)
(with reference to serial No. 3, 2012)
v)    Taxi/Maxi Cabs (Premium class Tourist Taxi/Maxi Cab Contract     19%
Carriages like Innova, Fortuner etc.)
(with reference to serial No. 3, 2012)
vi)    Auto Richshaw (Petrol version)                                                               9.8%
vii)    Stage Carriage viz; Auto similar rate like Mini buses Taga Magic