The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking's (BEST) 'Chalo' mobile app and 'Chalo' card were launched on Tuesday to give people flexible commute options and other benefits, including booking tickets online and live tracking of buses.
Speaking after launching the app and card, Maharashtra Minister Aaditya Thackeray said beyond flexible commute options, the civic-run BEST was focused on digitization of services, electric buses, affordable fares, as well as the goals of using 100 per cent alternate fuels by 2027 and increasing the fleet size to 10,000 vehicles.
Thackeray, also the guardian minister of Mumbai suburban district, further said BEST was looking at increasing double-decker buses and inducting hydrogen fuel buses.
The state government and BMC were committed to financially support the undertaking to ensure greater comforts to people, including better bus stops and more illumination of streets.
The Shiv Sena leader also launched the NCMC complaint smart card of BEST as well as new fare schemes for the passengers, one that provided 10 trips at Rs 70 and another called 'Flexifare'. ''BEST follows its mantra of 'Pudhe Chala' (move forward), by which it has modernised its services & fleet over the years. Furthermore, BEST has made commuting flexible by introducing tap to pay smart cards, super saver plans, and NCMC (National Common Mobility Card) complaint cards,'' Thackeray tweeted after the function.
Speaking on the occasion, BEST General Manager Lokesh Chandra said the undertaking aims to include 100 per cent eco-friendly air-conditioned electric buses in its fleet by the year 2027.
''Under the Digital Best 2.0 initiative, various public utility schemes like micro banking, e-commerce trade will be implemented,'' he added.
BEST officials said the new mobile app will allow passengers to book tickets and passes online, track buses live etc.