Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: A day after oil companies reduced petrol and diesel prices, the Odisha government today slashed bus fares across all the categories to pass on the benefit to commuters. Transport minister Ramesh Majhi announced a reduction of 1 paise per km in bus fares in ordinary, express, deluxe and AC categories.

The last reduction in bus fares was on November 5, 2014. Earlier, ministry sources had revealed that after reviewing the technical committee’s report, the government will take a decision in a day or two.

The committee submitted its recommendations after the previous cut in petrol and diesel prices. However, with another cut in the prices in the meantime, a meeting of the committee will be convened soon and the government will take a decision, sources said prior to the decision.

Welcoming the cut in fuel prices, the private bus owners had also shown their support for a reduction in bus fares. All Odisha Private Bus Owners’ Association spokesperson Debashis Nayak said that for bus owners, reduction of fares is beneficial as it increases affordability and boosts demand for bus services.

The bus owners have urged the government to create an automatic fare adjustment mechanism for effective and timely implementation of price changes.

In the latest round of fuel price cut, petrol price has been reduced by Rs 2.42 per litre while diesel price has seen a drop of Rs 2.25 per litre. This is the third time since the beginning of 2015 that the prices of both the transportation fuels have been reduced.

According to Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), the latest revision was done keeping in account the deceleration of prices globally and the appreciation in rupee-dollar exchange rate. “The combined impact of both these factors warrant a decrease in retail selling prices of both petrol and diesel,” IOC said.

Notably, this was the 10th time that petrol prices have been cut by State-run oil retailers since August 2014. Diesel prices have been reduced six times since its deregulation.

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