With female passengers permitted to board local trains on Wednesday, the load on BrihanMumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) buses was comparatively low post 11 am. However, the rush was the same during the early hours of the day, traffic officials and depot managers informed.
"Female passengers constitute 35 per cent of the total commuter base in Mumbai. The load on buses is bound to ease now, as ladies have been allowed to board local trains," a senior BEST traffic official told the Free Press Journal.
Female commuters are allowed to commute by locals during non peak hours (11 am to 3 pm and after 7 pm). To balance the demand, BEST officials are planning to add more buses to certain routes during morning and evening peak hours.
BEST has its own fleet of 3,500 plus buses. Alongside this, it is operating 1,000 buses of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) daily. "The demand is high during peak hours. In certain routes, we are planning to add more buses during the morning hours to improve the frequency," the official added. He also maintained that the management will be analysing the routes in the next few days, following which the plan will be implemented.
BEST officials said, now that unlocking has begun and more and more people are coming out on the roads, more Tejaswini buses will also be rolled out to meet the passenger demand.
BEST had resumed its Tejaswini buses for women in June on the Vikhroli-Backbay route. Now, the management is considering adding more Tejaswini buses to different routes of the city to cater to the demand of women commuters.