Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) on Tuesday made an impassioned plea to the State government to allow it to enhance the ticket fare considering the huge losses being incurred due to the rising prices of diesel and other expenses.

However, Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao had advised the Transport Department as well as RTC authorities to submit relevant proposals to the State Cabinet during its next meeting to take an appropriate decision after weighing all options.

He also asked the Energy Department and the distribution companies which have been appealing to the government for enhancing the power tariff, to submit the proposals to the State Cabinet for taking a final decision in this regard.

At a high level meeting on the condition of TSRTC at Pragathi Bhavan here, the TSRTC authorities informed the Chief Minister that the Corporation was facing an additional financial burden of Rs 550 crore due to increase in diesel prices by Rs 22 per litre in the last one-and-a-half years. The rise in prices of bus spare parts such as tyres and tubes along with diesel, is causing further losses to the Corporation, totalling to Rs 600 crore per year.

Though the State government initiated measures to strengthen the RTC and revive it to its full potential, the Covid-19 pandemic had turned the situation sour. The RTC had incurred revenue loss of about Rs 3,000 crore due to the Covid pandemic and subsequent lockdowns.

In Hyderabad alone, the Corporation is suffering revenue loss up to Rs 90 crore per month. A total of 97 depots across the State, are also operating in losses.

Led by Transport Minister Puvvada Ajay Kumar, the RTC officials appealed to the Chief Minister for enhancing the fares considering the unavoidable circumstances and help the Corporation continue its services to the people. Further, they pointed out that the government had earlier announced in the Assembly in March last that it would increase the RTC fares, but did not implement the same due to the pandemic.

As the State government was already taking various measures and bearing the financial burden of RTC to ensure quality services to the commuters as well as welfare of the employees, they stated that it would be impossible for the Corporation to survive without enhancing the fares and compensate for the losses incurred in the aftermath of Corona pandemic and rising prices of diesel.

On the occasion, Energy Minister G Jagadish Reddy and Telangana State Generation Corporation (TSGenco) and Transmission Corporation (TSTransco) chairman and managing director D Prabhakar Rao informed the Chief Minister about the losses incurred by the power utilities in the State. 

They explained that the power companies, like all sectors during the Covid pandemic, have suffered severe losses and appealed for revision of the power charges in order to continue quality services. They reminded that the power tariff was not revised for the past six years.

However, the Chief Minister asked the officials of the TSRTC and the power utilities to submit the proposals to the State Cabinet which will take an appropriate decision during its next meeting.

He stated that the State government was taking take all measures to safeguard and strengthen the TSRTC. He assured that efforts were underway to strengthen the Corporation and put it back on track of recovery. He asked the officials to submit the proposals suggesting other revenue earning options to the government so that the Cabinet can take an appropriate decision during its next meeting.

IT and Industries Minister KT Rama Rao, Transport Minister Puvvada Ajay Kumar, Energy Minister G Jagadish Reddy, TSRTC chairman Bajireddy Govardhan, MLAs Marri Janardhan Reddy, Saidi Reddy, Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar, Special Chief Secretary for Transport Sunil Sharma, Special Chief Secretary for Finance K Ramakrishna Rao, Transco and Genco CMD D Prabhakar Rao, TSRTC managing director VC Sajjanar, CMO Principal Secretary S Narsing Rao, CMO Secretary Rajashekhar Reddy and other officials were present.

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