BMTC plans to trim manpower with conductor-less buses

Faced with a fund crunch, the transport utility is likely to operate conductor-less Metro feeder services in the city.

Published: 13th February 2017 03:48 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th February 2017 03:48 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Commuters travelling in BMTC’s Metro feeder buses may soon not find conductors to issue tickets. Faced with a fund crunch, the transport utility is likely to operate conductor-less Metro feeder services in the city.

BMTC officials told Express that conductor-less buses will offer incentives to passengers with smart cards (to be available from April) while a flat rate will be charged for those without smart cards.

“The proposal is in the initial stage but the idea is to reduce the operational cost by cutting down on human resources. We are now spending nearly 54 percent of our revenue on operational costs, mostly salaries and incentives for staff members. We have to come up with innovative steps to reduce our operational loss,” said a senior BMTC official.   

This is not the first time BMTC has come up with the idea of operating buses without conductors.

In the late 90s, BMTC introduced Pushpak buses, popularly known as Janapriya Vahini services, which had a single door with/without conductors. The driver would double up as a conductor in case there wasn’t one. BMTC was forced to withdraw the system after commuters complained that it was distracting the driver.  

BMTC officials say the driver-cum-conductor system will be more effective this time. Conductor-less buses will have radio-frequency identification (RFID) card readers, video surveillance and monitoring, passenger information system, pneumatic-operated doors and ticket-issuing facility at bus stops.

“The e-transactions will reduce the use of cash and manpower. Video surveillance, monitoring and line checking staff members will reduce ticketless travel,” a BMTC official said.

BMTC employees, however, are opposing the concept as operating buses without conductors is in violation of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. They also fear it is an attempt to reduce the number of employees.

A BMTC official said the conductor-less system is popular in cities like Paris, London and Los Angeles.
In Mumbai, Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) introduced bus services without conductors on certain routes in 2015.

Stay up to date on all the latest Bengaluru news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.