The Delhi-Kathmandu bus service run by national capital's transporter DTC has been earning marginal profits incurring a cost of Rs 1.37 lakh per day, a reply to an RTI query has revealed. The bus service has been generating a daily average revenue of over Rs 1.44 lakh. This translates into a marginal daily profit of around 4.96 per cent in operating the service that connects the capital cities of India and Nepal. The bus service covers a distance of 1,167 km between Delhi and Kathmandu with stops at Firozabad, Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh and Mugling (Nepal). The fare for the journey earlier cost over Rs 2,300, but now it has been increased to around Rs 2,800. In the reply to the RTI query filed by PTI, the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) informed that between February 17 and March 3, the bus was operated 13 times, barring Sundays. The daily expenditure to operate the bus cost Rs 1,37,390. While the generated revenue varied each day -- with the highest of Rs 1,94,235 recorded on February 18 and the lowest (Rs 95,710) registered on March 3. The number of passengers also varied on a daily basis. A maximum number of 69 people commuted via this bus service on February 18. Meanwhile, only 34 people (the lowest in 15 days) travelled on March 3 (the day the DTC generated the lowest revenue through the service).
According to the information provided by the officials regarding the 15-day operation of the bus service, the DTC earned a marginal profit. From February 17 to March 3, the DTC spent over Rs 17.89 lakh to operate the bus service and in return, generated a sum of over Rs 18.74 lakh, showed the data provided by the officials. The bus departs from Delhi to Kathmandu on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The return bus from Kathmandu to Delhi leaves on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The bus service was launched in November 2014. The operation was shut down on March 23, 2020, amid first the wave of the pandemic. It was resumed in December last year. The bus also stops at Sonauli (India-Nepal border) for customs checking. Passengers travelling between Delhi and Kathmandu are not allowed to disembark or embark enroute except at the scheduled halts. The Maitri Bus Sewa was initiated as a symbol of friendship between India and Nepal and since its beginning, the buses have frequently carried pilgrims, tourists, foreign delegates and the general public from both the nations.