The government has announced to take legal action against transport entrepreneurs that have been disobeying the government´s direction to adjust public transportation fare.
Officials of Department of Transport Management (DoTM) have said they would initiate legal action against transport entrepreneurs if the latter do not reduce public transportation even after a notice to this effect is published in Nepal Gazette.
“We have already sent a letter to Department of Printing (DoP) to publish a notice regarding reduction in public transportation fare. Hopefully, the notice will be published within few days,” Madhu Sudan Burlakoti, director general of DoTM, told Republica. “If transport entrepreneurs and found overcharging passengers even after the notice is published, we will take necessary legal action against them.”
DoTM took the initiative after the Ministry of Physical Planning and Transport (MoPPT) directed it to do needful for implementing the new fare.
The government on February 11 had reduced public transportation fare by 2.03 percent in all routes by at least Re 1 for public vehicles operating in urban areas.
Transport entrepreneurs operating vehicles in local routes have not implemented the fare, terming the new fare as unscientific. They are still charging minimum fare of Rs 14 even though the government has fixed minimum fare at Rs 13.
Dinesh Bhandari, president of National Federation of Nepal Transport Entrepreneurs, said the decision to reduce fare by at least Re 1 won´t be acceptable for them. “As per the Scientific Fare Determination Mechanism, public transportation fare has come down by 3.203 percent which is equivalent to 32 paisa only,” he added. Meanwhile, Burlakoti said they decided to reduce fare by Re 1 for local routes so that passengers can experience drop in transportation fare.
“Though minimum fare has been fixed at Rs 13, we will take Rs 13.72 as the base price while adjusting transportation fare in the future,” he added. Burlakoti said the government will take action against transport entrepreneurs as per the Motor Vehicles and Transport Management Act, 1993, if they continue to disobey its directions.