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Bizman challenges decision to scrap AC buses

The plea has been filed through advocate VP Patil

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Bizman challenges decision to scrap AC buses
AC buses were launched in 2008-2009
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The decision of Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking to scrap 259 air-conditioned (AC) buses from its fleet has not gone well with Mumbaikars. A businessman with an office at Nepeansea Road, Firoz Khan along with others has challenged the decision in Bombay High Court.

The plea has been filed through advocate VP Patil. "We have prayed for directions from the court to stay the decision of the BEST Undertaking to scrap AC Buses," he said.

The petition also opposes the BEST's plans to lease out their properties to raise capital and instead convert them into playgrounds."

BEST had procured its first batch of 45 air-conditioned buses in 2008-09 at a cost of Rs 55.53 lakh each. In the next financial year, 200 AC buses, purchased at Rs 65.56 lakh each, were added to the fleet. In the last phase of procurement in 2010, the Undertaking procured 14 AC buses at cost of Rs 67.04 lakh each. However, the buses suffered many problems like regular breakdowns, non-functional ACs and rusting bodies.

Patil is likely to mention the plea before a bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur on Tuesday, seeking for urgent hearing. He has also attached a report that appeared in DNA on September 8, titled "BEST to finally scrap 259 King Long AC buses," along with his application.

JUDICIAL INQUIRY

  • The petition also states that from 2012 to 2016, the total losses accumulated by the BEST undertaking are more than Rs 33,000 crore. "A judicial inquiry should be conducted into the matter," Patil said.
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