The Bangladesh Jatri Kalyan Samity (passenger welfare association) has urged the government not to raise bus fare more than 15 paisa per kilometer.
The body also demanded the withdrawal of the unfair 23% fuel price hike and an end to the transport strike.
"The bus owners have already proposed a 50% increase of bus fares but the fare should not be increased more than by 15 paisa per km," said the association's Secretary General Mohammad Mozammel Hoque Chowdhury, in a press conference held at the Dhaka Reporters' Unity on Saturday.
He said, "In 2016, when the fuel price was reduced by Tk3 per liter, the bus fare was reduced by 3 paisa per kilometer. As the fuel price has been raised by TK15, the bus fare must not be increased more than by 15 paisa per km this time."
Mozammel also said, "The income of 77% people of the country already went down due to the strain of the global pandemic, making 3.24 crore people become poor newly," he said, adding, "An 23% increase in the fuel price will lead to further price hike of commodities, and eventually to extreme inflation."
The government has pushed people into a new crisis instead of helping them overcome the pandemic blows while millions are at risk of poverty, he continued.
Mozammel Hoque further said the government has made extra profits for the past six years by selling fuel at high rates while its price in the global market was comparatively low.
Earlier, while the transport strike in the aftermath of the 23% hike in diesel and kerosene prices left commuters in utmost misery, the supply chain witnessed disruptions. All these are feared to add to the inflationary pressure already putting the economy under serious strain.