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Mumbai's BEST incurs Rs.2.26 crore loss daily, reveals RTI query
Mumbai's public bus service, popularly known by its acronym BEST, is running into losses of Rs.2.26 crore per day mainly due to declining patronage and high operating costs, an RTI query revealed on Monday.
Considered the lifeline of Mumbai, BEST - with a fleet of around 2,600 buses - rendered remarkable services in times of major crises and natural calamities, but was now facing bad days, said RTI activist Anil Galgali.
It has been serving the residents of Mumbai, earlier known as Bombay, for the past around 90 years.
"For May-June, daily expenditure comes to Rs.6.16 crore while its income through ticket sale is Rs.3.90 crore, leaving a gap of Rs.2.26 crore per day," Galgali said.
BEST, or Bombay Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking, is patronised by around 2.83 million commuters daily, working virtually round-the-clock.
The base fare is Rs.8 for regular and limited buses, Rs.10 for express service and Rs.30 for air conditioned service. BEST serves the whole of Mumbai and parts of Thane, Navi Mumbai and Raigad.
"BEST has been serving the city selflessly and needs to be encouraged as it can help save a lot of time and money. I have written to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to demand separate lanes for BEST buses to help avoid traffic snarls and improve efficiency," Galgali said.
BEST is the third 'avatar' of Mumbai's public transport system, which began with horse-drawn trams in May 1874.
These continued till 1905 when the horses gave way to electric trams, which proved immensely popular, economical and efficient.
In 1926, the Bombay Municipal Corporation launched the first BEST bus services which too proved very popular.
Meanwhile, the electric trams shut down in 1964 due to high costs, poor patronage and inaccessibility to many metropolis areas, and growing convenience of Mumbai suburban trains.
In 1947, the then Bombay Municipal Corporation acquired the tram operating company and re-named it the Bombay Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking, which is presently serving the city.



Meenal Mamdani

2 years ago

This needs to be analyzed by bus routes, timing of buses, and the type of service, a/c or non a/c etc.
BEST is absolutely essential for the smooth functioning of the city. So rather than lament the loss, we should figure out where streamlining is in order. This may inconvenience some commuters who will no doubt complain to their municipal representatives. But that should not deter a thorough analysis the results of which should be made public.

After yoga, climb a tree to boost your memory
You may have attempted this during childhood but climbing a tree and balancing on a beam along with yoga exercises can dramatically improve cognitive skills in adults too, researchers at the University of North Florida have found.
By doing activities that make us think, we can exercise our brains as well as our bodies, they said.
“By taking a break to do activities that are unpredictable and require us to consciously adapt our movements, we can boost our working memory to perform better in the classroom and the boardroom,” said research associate Dr Ross Alloway.
The results suggest that working memory improvements can be made in just a couple of hours of these physical exercises.
“Improving working memory can have a beneficial effect on so many areas in our life. It is exciting to see that 'proprioceptive dynamic activities' can enhance it in such a short period of time,” added study co-author Tracy Alloway.
For the study, researchers recruited adults ages 18 to 59 and tested their working memory.
Proprioception, the awareness of body positioning and orientation, is associated with working memory.
One group was given dynamic activities while the other were asked to join yoga classes, defined as “static proprioceptive activities”.
The participants undertook activities like climbing trees, walking and crawling on a beam approximately three-inches wide, moving while paying attention to posture, running barefoot, navigating over, under and around obstacles, as well as lifting and carrying awkwardly-weighted objects.
After two hours, participants were tested again.
The researchers found that their working memory capacity had increased dramatically by 50 percent.
“Proprioceptively dynamic training” may place a greater demand on working memory because as environment and terrain changes, the individual recruits working memory to update information to adapt appropriately.
“Though the yoga control group engaged in activities that required awareness of body position, it was relatively static as they performed the yoga postures in a small space which did not allow for locomotion or navigation,” the authors noted.
However, neither control group experienced working memory benefits.
The paper was published in the journal Perceptual and Motor Skills.


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