Mumbai News : Mumbai: The peak hours in the city can be a nightmare for the commuters and the rush and chaos can lead to a bad start to the day. To bring some respite, Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has launched premium bus services for office-goers.
Promising comfort, speed and cost-effectiveness, this is India’s first such initiative by a state transport corporation. These premium buses will roll out in the first week of September after a few more trials, said BEST officials.
Meanwhile, on Thursday, union road and transport minister Nitin Gadkari unveiled India’s first double-decker air-conditioned electric bus in the city, which will replace the existing double-decker fleet of the BEST.
At the inaugural event, Gadkari said that ethics, economy, ecology and environment are the four important pillars of the country.
“I have fond childhood memories of travelling in a BEST double-decker bus and sitting on the front in the upper deck. I am glad that BEST has increased their fleet and understands the need of the hour to be energy efficient and provide comfortable travel to passengers,” said Gadkari.
He also requested chief minister Eknath Shinde to contemplate making double-decker flyovers in the city. “Mumbai to Delhi expressway up to JNPT is already on the cards, I would like to also extend it to Nariman Point,” added Gadkari. Shinde assured that he will look into these and provide all necessary support towards better infrastructure.
Speaking of the dedicated fleet for office-goers, the buses will be in purple and orange colour, and users can easily access ticketing, payment options and provisions via mobile apps and also check seat availability.
BEST officials informed, that these ‘seating only’ buses are comfortable and air-conditioned, and no standing passengers will be allowed. The application at present is yet to offer the seat booking facility.
“Seats will have headrest wings and adjustable footrests, dedicated USB port for charging on every seat, express service with fewer stops, all at an affordable price and with monthly passes available. Moreover, the app has a safe reach facility wherein women and senior citizens can be tracked even after they have reached their respective destination,” said Lokesh Chandra, General Manager BEST.
BEST has also provided automated streetlights that will switch off automatically when daylight arrives.