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No bus fare hike, decrease possible “ NTC chief

2013 Aug 13

Ishara Mudugamuwa

There are no plans to increase bus fares while there is a possibility of bus fares being decreased in the near future with the provision of many facilities by the state for the private sector passenger transport service, said National Transport Commission (NTC) chairman Roshan Gunawardane.

Addressing a media conference at the NTC yesterday, the chairman said though some private bus associations make statements on a bus fare hike, only the government has the authority to decide.

“The government has taken a number of measures to provide relief for private bus owners.

Log sheet fees and administration fees will be reduced by 50 percent. The NTC expects to reduce bus fares after providing relief for private bus owners,” he said. The chairman said log sheet prices will be reduced by August 15. Leasing interest rates of private buses have already been reduced from four percent to three percent.

Gunawardane said according to conditions mentioned in the route permits, all private bus owners should provide services according to the prices recommended by the government.

“The NTC has the authority to cancel route permits of bus owners who are not ready to accept the government’s decision on bus fare revisions,” he said. The government has established the Private Transport Ministry and the NTC to provide a better transport to the public.

The ministry and the NTC have a major responsibility to provide a quality transport service to the public. The private sector has only buses but the services are provided by the government.

The bus owners have no power to decide on a bus fare hike, Gunawardane said. The NTC will also take legal action against those misleading the public.
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