Mira Bhayandar: The public transport unit of the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) has offered free rides to female commuters on 8, March (Wednesday) which is celebrated as international women's day every year.
The MBMC had started the free bus ride scheme in 2021. As per official statistics, just 11,552 women travellers could enjoy free rides in 2021 due to the second corona wave coupled with travel restrictions. However, 21,461 female commuters availed the free facility on 8, March, 2022.The pro-feminine initiative has cost the Mira Bhayandar civic body Rs. 1,43,995 and Rs. 2,73,786 in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
“This is a small gesture of appreciation by the civic administration. Buses plying on all routes will be free for women.” said municipal commissioner- Dilip Dhole. Presently, the civic administration has a total of 74 buses, including 59 regular buses, 5 AC Volvos and 10 Midis. Out of the 74 buses 70 are plying on 18 routes in and out of the twin-city. As the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Transport (MBMT) bus services gradually reaches out to more parts in and out of the twin-city, the number of commuters travelling on a single day has reached 90,000 which is the highest since the introduction of the civic-run buses.
Notably, the civic administration is mooting upon the idea of providing free bus services to women on 8th of every month. After terminating the contract with the regular service provider, the civic administration has chalked out a stop-gap arrangement by appointing another private contractual agency for operating its bus fleet on a net cost contract (NCC) model. This is supported by the viability gap funding (VGF) to enhance the service network.
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