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HP Govt hikes bus fare by 24.44%, fixes minimum fare at Rs. 6

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bus fare hike in Himachal pradesh

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh Cabinet, in its meeting held today, has decided to increase minimum bus fare in the State. Now, the minimum bus fare will be Rs. 6 and the maximum distance for this fare will be three kms.

The decision has come as a major financial burden for the people dependent on public and private transport. The government was facing pressure from the private bus operators, who had also staged a protest by going on strike a couple of weeks ago.

At the same time, the public groups and several organizations had warned the government of dire consequences if the fares were hiked.

The government said that the fare approved are comparable  with those prevailing  in neighbouring states of Punjab (for plain areas Rs. 1.10 paisa per km for ordinary) and Uttrakhand (for hilly areas Rs. 1.72 paisa for ordinary), which were  fixed by Uttrakhand in 2017 (October) and about 3 months back in Punjab. 

The government justified that the bus fares were increased in the years 2010 and 2013 in the past. The percentage increase in the year 2010 compared to the previous fare was 33.33 percent and in the year 2013, the increase was 30.63 percent, it said.

The government said that the time span during which the fares were increased was only 3 years. However the present hike has come after a long period of 5 years and the percentage increase in the fare is 24.44 percent in plain areas and 20.69 percent in hilly areas in all categories of services i.e. Ordinary buses, Deluxe buses and Volvo buses.

The minimum fare has been fixed as Rs. 6/- and the maximum distance for which this fare will be applicable shall be three kms.

 The government said the fare hike is justified in view of the sharp increase in diesel prices. The diesel prices increased by about 44 percent after October 2017, it further added.

The decision is likely to face opposition from the public as well as oppositions.

List of New Rates Applicable

are Rates Area Present bus fare (per km) New    approved bus fare (per km) % Increase
Ordinary Buses Plain Area 90 112 24.44
  Hill Area 145 175 20.69
Deluxe Buses Plain Area 110 137 24.44
  Hill Area 180 217 20.69
Volvo/AC Buses Plain Area 220 274 24.44
  Hill Area 300 362 20.69

Misc News/Press Release

Heavy Rain, Snow in Himachal, Yellow Alert Issued for Nov 15

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Hp met weather prediction nov 2019

Shimla-The Himachal Pradesh Meteorological Department has predicted rain and snow from 14 to 16 November 2019. While rain at isolated places is predicted in middle and high hills on November 14, the Met has predicted heavy rain in low and middle hills and heavy snowfall in higher hills.

Weather prediction 2019

A yellow alert has been issued for November 15 in five districts -Chamba, Kangra, Kullu, Mandi, and Lahaul-Spiti.

The weather is predicted to be dry thereafter.  

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Misc News/Press Release

17 November Declared Paid Holiday for Municipal Council Elections

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MC elections in himachal pradesh 2019

Shimla-The Himachal Pradesh Government has declared 17 November 2019, as paid holiday in the areas of Municipal Council Solan and Nalagarh in district Solan and Rampur in district Shimla, where bye-election is scheduled to be held to fill up the vacant seats.

A Spokesperson of the state government said informed on Wednesday that all government offices, boards, corporations, educational institutions and industrial establishments of the state under Industrial Disputes Act and shops will remain closed on this day in the said areas.

He clarified that special casual leave may be given to those employees who are working in different places in the state but have a right to vote in these Wards on the production of a certificate from the concerned Presiding Officer that the employee has actually cast his/her vote.

 

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RTI Activist Writes to Governor over HPPSC Member Rachana Gupta’s Participation in Politically Dominated Event

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HPPSC Member Rachana Gupta at Global Investor meet

Shimla-The Member of Himachal Pradesh Public Service Commission, Rachana Gupta, who has been in controversy over her appointment, is again in news. This time, an RTI activist has written to the Governor of the State, Bandaru Dattatreya, pointing out the presence of Gupta in recently held Global Investor Meet, Dharamshala. A picture of Gupta with the wife of the Chief Minister Jairam Thakur at the event was also attached with the letter.

The activist has termed the event as political dominated in nature where prominent leaders of the party were present.

The activist, Dev Ashish Bhattacharya, in his letter, has asked whether Gupta had obtained any permission from the Chairman, HPPSC, to participate in the said event.

The activist also raised a question whether it was appropriate for a member of HPPSC to participate in any politically dominated meetings or events.

“Suppose the wife of a Chief Secretary is a High Court Judge, then can she justify her participation in a political dominated event by arguing that since her husband participated in that event as a Chief Secretary so she can also participate,”

said the activist in his letter.

He said such participation of an HPPSC member would only erode the sanctity of the Commission in the eyes of the candidates and their parents who take the competitive examinations. He also said that such an act would also lead to erosion of the faith that the candidates have in the HPPSC.

The activist said that already a complaint is pending in the office of the Governor relating to criminal case Gupta was facing at the time of her appointment as HPPSC member. In July 2019, Gupta had to obtain bail from the Joginder Nagar court, the activist said.

Referring to the well-known proximity of Gupta with the family of the Chief Minister, the activist said that she was appointed within a very short span of time right after the Jairam Thakur took over the government. A special vacancy was created for her despite the fact that at the time of her appointment there was no such vacancy.

The activist has requested the Governor to initiate an inquiry into the matter and remove Gupta from the membership of HPPSC “in the interest of justice to the candidates who appear in various competitive examinations being conducted by the institution.”

At the time of her appointment in January 2018, the activist had alleged that the Bhartiya Janata Party allegedly created and filled two seats of the member of the HP Public Service Commission by violating the orders of the Supreme Court regarding the proper procedure to make an appointment on such positions.

In addition, two posts were created when all three posts were already occupied, the activist had alleged.

In July 2019, Gupta had filed a defamation suit against a the activist for allegedly tarnishing her image and reputation by posting wrong posts on Facebook.  She had made claim of Rs 1 crore from Bhatacharya.

 

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