Ministers, tell us how much to rant

Of the passengers who travelled in 957 omnibuses from the terminus, only 97 were willing to file a complaint about excess fares when authorities asked them about fares on the spot.
Electricity Minister V Senthilbalaji; Transport Minister SS Sivasankar
Electricity Minister V Senthilbalaji; Transport Minister SS Sivasankar

CHENNAI: Both Transport Minister SS Sivasankar and Electricity Minister V Senthilbalaji seem to believe the public has accepted the recent electricity tariff hike and exorbitant cost of omnibus tickets due to a lack of opposition from the public.

Of the passengers who travelled in 957 omnibuses from the terminus, only 97 were willing to file a complaint about excess fares when authorities asked them about fares on the spot. Since there was always a public outcry against excess ticket fares collected by omnibus owners during festival season and long public holidays, Sivasankar recently said that those who chose omnibuses over government buses booked their tickets online knowing the fares.

Of course, the minister’s justification was mercilessly trolled on social media.

He might have taken a cue from Senthilbalaji who had dismissed the media persons questioning him over the public opposition to the electricity tariff hike last month citing the meagre response received by the TNERC for the Tangedco’s proposal.

“TNERC conducted a public hearing on the hike. It got petitions including emails opposing the hike from 7,338 people out of the total consumer base of 3.5 crore. This itself shows the reality of the so-called opposition to the hike. Some people are raking up the issue for political reasons. Since it’s an acceptable hike, people are prepared for it mentally,” the minister told reporters last month.

Could it be inferred that the ministers require the public to rant loudly and take to the streets in rage to register their grievances?

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