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Kolkata: Private bus operators have called for a transport strike in Kolkata, North and South 24-Parganas districts demanding a revision of fare.

The strike to be observed from 6 am on 7 June, Thursday has been called by the Joint Council of Bus Syndicates ~ an umbrella body of private bus operators.

“The last time the state government had increased the bus fare was in 2014. At that time, diesel was selling at Rs 60 a litre; now it costs over Rs 70. This apart, other related expenditure such as insurance etcetera has almost doubled. It is not possible to operate bus unless the government increases the fare,” said Tapan Banerjee, general secretary of the Bus Syndicates.

He said that while the minimum fare for state government-owned buses is Rs 7; in case of private buses, it is still Rs 6.

“We have been persuading the state government for a long time to revise the fare. Transport department had constituted a three-member committee in January to look into this but nothing has been done so far. Hence, if the government does not increase the fare by 6 June, we shall observe the one-day token strike on 7 June,” Banerjee said.

The All India Motors Congress has already called for a nationwide transport strike on 18 June against the exorbitant and frequent rise in fuel prices. The truck and taxi operators’ associations in West Bengal have announced joining the strike. The taxi operators too are demanding a revision of fare.