Addressing mediapersons after a meeting with the Board of Directors of the Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC), he said there would be no increase in the fares but people using buses to transport luggage but not travelling themselves would be charged.
Agnihotri said no employee of the HRTC would be posted in tribal areas for more than three years and 300 posts of bus conductors would be filled soon. The board of directors has also given its consent to release Dearness Allowance of Rs 3 crore to the employees on Diwali, he added.
The HRTC is focusing on increasing revenue and reducing expenses as its monthly expenditure is Rs 145 crore and the revenue earned is Rs 70 crore.
The gap is filled by the state government's grant-in-aid as the HRTC bus facility is available in remote areas where other bus operators are unwilling to operate due to low demand. Moreover, the HRTC gives several concessions such as the 50 per cent rebate for women travellers, he added.
Currently, the HRTC has a fleet of 3,200 buses. There are about 19 luxury buses in the fleet and the government plans to increase that to 50 as the HRTC's income from the long routes and luxury buses is its main source of revenue, he stated.
This is the golden jubilee year of the HRTC and various steps will be taken to modernise and digitalise the corporation, Agnihotri said, adding that cashless transactions for purchasing tickets would be started within three months.