Activists write to BMC to not restrict BEST as feeder service to other modes of transport

The 54 activists urged BEST to restart services on 90 long routes that have been cancelled after they were reportedly found to be making heavy losses

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The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has turned out to be one of the most sought modes of public transport thanks to the revision of fares and the connectivity it offers. However, recently the BEST undertaking announced its plan to restructure bus routes as feeder services to the upcoming Metro, monorail and railway corridors.

This has led to the activists and citizens writing to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to discontinue the feeder services. The activists submitted an open letter on Tuesday to Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi.

The letter, signed by 54 activists, asked the commissioner to not restrict the transport wing as feeder service to make a “success” of other modes such as Metros. They added that this would mean ignoring BEST's role in connecting areas not connected by a rail system. The activists also urged the transport corporation restart services on 90 long routes that had been cancelled after they were reportedly found to be making heavy losses.

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Suggesting an alternative, the activists under an independent citizens' forum, Aamchi Mumbai Aamchi BEST (AMAB) asked BEST to run additional long route services, which could work a substitute to the existing railway and Metro corridors.

AMAB alleged that as per a report of ‘Jan Sunwai’ (public hearing) held on March 1, about eight lakh people living in M (east) and M (west) wards, were ill-served by BEST. They further added that lakhs of residents from Shivaji Nagar, Sanjay Nagar, Miraj Nagar, Rafiq Nagar were facing problems as they have no other alternative other than the bus route number 318, which has been stopped.

The report also stated that BEST buses should be allowed on all road projects such as Sea Link, Eastern Freeway and all flyovers.

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