The BEST has made a grand plan of illuminating bus stops with LED advertisements. The Undertaking is also planning to generate revenue by displaying advertisements by bus queue shelters for which they called tenders. These bus queue shelters will be displayed with advertisements for a period of 20 years until 2042.
However the opposition leader at BMC for member of BEST Committee Ravi Raja in his letter to the BEST administration on June 13, has alleged that there is unnecessary delay in selecting the bidder for this contract. The letter written to the General Manager of BEST and marked a copy to the BMC Commissioner as well; details about the tender called for display of advertising in some 2500 bus stops.
The above tender was published on April 6 and opened on May 6 which was further extended to May 23. ‘The BMC budget for 2022-23 shows a deficit of Rs 2236.48 crore wherein losses of Transport Division is Rs 2210.47 crore. The main source of revenue for Transport Division has been through advertising on BEST bus panels and bus queue shelters. As nearly more than 21 days have passed and BEST administration is not taking any decision,’ stated the letter.
The BEST has received four bids that runs into crores of rupees that has been quoted by each of the bidder for advertising rights. Sources in the BEST said that they are looking into the quotes sent by the bidders as there is substantial difference between the amounts quoted. The letter further adds that the BMC in the past 3 years has provided financial aid of more than Rs 5000 crore to the BEST.
Apart from this, the BEST is working out on ideas to improve the bus stops in Mumbai. These include solar power based bus stops and green bus stops. These bus stops are likely to have mobile charging points that can be used by passengers waiting there that will be powered by solar panels.