Owners of private buses have urged the West Bengal Department of Transport and the state election commission to raise the fare of the buses to be connected to the service during the upcoming panchayat elections. The three-tier rural elections will be held in West Bengal on July 8. Bus operators considered the current prices to be “too meager” to cover operating expenses and pay the salaries of bus staff.

On Monday, the Joint Board of the Bus Union appealed to the Department of Transport and the State Election Commission to raise the fare granted to bus owners. Earlier in April, the board also wrote to the Department of Transportation and mentioned seven demands. Although the council wrote to the government in April, it received no response.

“On Monday, Bus Union Joint Board Secretary Tappan Banerjee met with state election commission officials to discuss the council’s demands and urged the polling commission to view them with sympathy as non-cooperation on their part will only render the private bus operators helpless.” source.

In the letter, the council demanded that bus operators be paid Rs 3,500 per day for each bus deployed for election duty instead of the current rate of Rs 2,300. He also urged the government to revise the daily wages paid to bus staff to 300 rupees from 150 rupees, along with proper voting arrangements so that they can exercise their privilege.

Banerjee said, “Usually the bus operator pays around 1,700 rupees to the bus driver and his assistant every day as salary. The operator gets only 2,300 rupees from the government and after paying the salaries, the remaining amount is not enough to cover fuel costs and other expenses. In fact, the current daily provisions are also too meager to suffice for food and other amenities.”

The council, citing delays in payment in previous state elections, urged the government to pay 75 percent of the bonus in advance and the remainder within 15 days after submission of the invoices.

The council has sought to pay bus drivers compensation for the cost of diesel and pay the mobile phone bill when they are sent on election missions, while also requesting a guarantee of financial assistance from the government in the event of an employee injury or if any injuries occur during polling. practical.
Paromita Bhattacharyya is working as a trainee in the Kolkata office of The Indian Express


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