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Coronavirus Fear: Less passenger response to Shivneri bus services

The bus services for general passengers were allowed after the Maharashtra government lifted the requirement of e-permit for inter-district travel.

Coronavirus Fear: Less passenger response to Shivneri bus services
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The Uddhav Thackeray government had earlier allowed the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) to start its bus services for inter-district travel under ‘Mission Begin Again’. Passengers can also travel via Shivneri bus services on Mumbai-Thane-Pune route. 

The bus services for general passengers were allowed after the Maharashtra government lifted the requirement of e-permit for inter-district travel. However, people from Pune and Mumbai are opting not to travel through Shivneri bus service due to the fear of contracting coronavirus. 

The MSRTC and Shivneri bus services are only allowed to ferry 22 passengers instead of 44 and only 10 to 15 per cent response has been received in the last 20 days. On August 20, only 100 passengers travelled via Shivneri bus service. 

Currently, there are only 31 daily trips of Shivneri buses from Mumbai to Pune railway station. On Thane to Pune route, nearly 14 round trips are made. Meanwhile, the train services from Pune to Mumbai have also received only 10 to 15 per cent response. 

Both cities - Mumbai and Pune - have high coronavirus cases and the passengers are less likely to travel fearing that they might contract coronavirus.  

In July last year, the ticket price for Shivneri buses was reduced to ₹80. Earlier, the tickets were priced at ₹120. Due to the reduction in the ticket price, the number of daily passengers increased last year as compared to 2018. 

Nearly 21,000 passengers travelled from Mumbai to Pune on Shivneri till February this year and the number of buses was also increased to 300.  

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