Karnataka: KSRTC fails to explore non-fare revenue sources | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU: While Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation is reeling under financial crisis, it is yet to explore non-ticketing revenue to reduce losses.
In August last year, KSRTC finalised a tender to operate a courier service using its network of bus services, including NWKRTC and NEKRTC. It also selected Hyderabad-based Netxcell Limited as a software solution provider and Bengaluru-based Strategic Outsourcing India Pvt Ltd as a business facilitator, but the service is yet to see the light of day.
KSRTC records show it suffered a loss of Rs 134 crore in 2018-19 compared to a profit of Rs 4.5 crore in 2017-18. It’s unlikely to see pre-Covid levels of ridership any time soon due to work from home and virus scare, which means it has to focus on non-fare box revenue for survival. Sources said KSRTC has not come up with any innovative schemes after the government transferred its then MD Rajender Kumar Kataria in 2017. The present MD Shivayogi Kalasad was unavailable for comments.
A senior KSRTC official said the parcel and courier service will be launched in two months. “It was delayed due to various reasons, including Covid-19. The firms suggested Namma Cargo as the name for the project, but it has not been finalised yet. We will think about other initiatives once this is launched. It will have a potential to generate around Rs 100 crore a year, but we will get a clearer picture only after trials,” he said.
Other states take lead

Other state-run bus corporations are taking the lead in generating non-fare box revenue. Parcel, courier and cargo services launched by Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation and Telangana State Road Transport Corporation are a hit. In 2018-19 alone, APSRTC earned Rs 72 crore from cargo services.
Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation has also started a venture — bus-trucks — for transportation of vegetables, fruits and essential commodities. According to MSRTC, 3,000 ageing buses from its fleet of 18,000 will be converted into trucks and cold-storage vans. MSRTC has also signed an MoU with Indian Oil Corporation to set up 30 fuel outlets on its land across the state.
Kerala State Road Transport Corporation recently started a parcel service named KSRTC logistics. It has converted two deluxe buses into sleepers, with 16 berths each and stationed at Munnar depot for tourists.
Kerala RTC uses junked buses to sell veggies
Kerala RTC is using its scrapped buses to sell essentials like vegetables, fish and meat under the ‘shops on wheels’ drive. It is also inviting entrepreneurs to sell items and open restaurants/food trucks on these discarded buses. It is giving its double-decker buses for celebrations and pre-wedding photoshoots.

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Sagar Biswas

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