ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Urban Public Transport Systems: Are the Taxation Policies Congenial for Their Survival and Growth?

Public transport systems in cities in India are largely bus-based and operated by public agencies. The performance of these organisations on the financial front has been rather wanting. Several reasons - both internal and external - have often been cited for their unsatisfactory performance. One of the less researched areas has been the various taxes these organisations have to bear. This paper analyses the different levies on the operation of buses in a city and also attempts to compare these in different states in the country. It also compares the taxes levied on other modes of transport. The impact of these taxes on the total operating costs is brought out. It is concluded that the high rate of various taxes are one of the important reasons for the financial unviability of public transport systems in India. Besides, as compared to other modes of transport, the levies on the public transport system are quite inequitable. The paper concludes by highlighting that the taxation regime for vehicles needs a total overhaul.

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