Women in Karnataka avail themselves of 227 crore free rides in govt buses in one year: Minister

11:45 AM Jun 11, 2024 | PTI |

In a landmark achievement, women in Karnataka have utilized 227 crore free rides in government non-luxury buses under the ‘Shakti’ guarantee during the past year, revealing Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy in a statement on Tuesday. This initiative has cost the state exchequer a significant Rs 5,526.64 crore.


The Congress government, led by Siddaramaiah, introduced the ‘Shakti’ scheme on June 11 last year, as one of the five guarantees promised before the Assembly elections. The scheme is believed to have played a crucial role in the Congress party’s electoral triumph, unseating the Basavaraj Bommai-led BJP government.

As the government commemorates the first anniversary of the scheme, Reddy highlighted that 226.95 crore women benefited from the scheme. The Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) clocked the highest number of rides at 71.45 crore, followed by the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) at 69.5 crore. North West Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NWKRTC) and Kalyana Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (KKRTC) reported 52.12 crore and 33.47 crore free rides respectively.

The financial burden on transport corporations has been intense: KSRTC incurred Rs 2,111.14 crore, NWKRTC Rs 1,352.68 crore, KKRTC Rs 1,125.81 crore, and BMTC Rs 937.01 crore. To enhance the public transport system, several measures have been put in place, including the approval of 5,800 new buses, 2,438 of which have already been inducted, Reddy noted.

Branding these new buses as ‘Pallakki’, ‘Ashwamedha Classic’, ‘Kalyana Ratha’, and ‘Amogha Varsha’, the state is making significant strides. Moreover, 9,000 posts in the department are slated for recruitment, with 1,844 driver-cum-conductors and technical assistants already appointed.


Recruitment for 6,500 posts is ongoing, including 2,500 driver-cum-conductors for KSRTC and 2,000 conductors for BMTC, among others. Additionally, accident relief compensation has been raised from Rs three lakh to Rs 10 lakh for dependents in the case of passenger fatalities, the minister added.


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