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  • BEST will shortly stop using open-deck Nilambari buses.

Due to their age, Mumbai’s Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking is retiring its open-to-sky double decker tourist buses.
Double decker open-to-sky tourist buses have experienced their best moments, whether it was welcome the victorious Indian cricket team or making memories for visitors on a heritage tour. Sadly, these buses, also known as Nilambari, will no longer be operating as of October 5 as part of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) initiative.

According to officials, three of the 15-year-old Nilambari buses owned by the transport organization will be demolished.

These non-AC roofless buses were launched in January 1997, according to the administration, and 150–250 people ride them every day. It is popular in the monsoon, around holidays, and at night. Their population has decreased from five to three over time.

On September 15, BEST will also retire the final four non-AC double-decker buses.

“We intend to host a celebration to bid these buses farewell. We still haven’t decided whether or not we’ll buy open-deck double-deck buses in the future, a BEST official stated. Around 50 of these open-deck buses, with the option of air conditioning on the lower deck, had previously been planned. The suggestion, meanwhile, was never accepted.

As the peak travel season approaches, the project is getting rid of these tourist-friendly buses.

“Seeing the city from a floor higher alters one’s viewpoint. The Nilambari buses provide this to visitors who want to learn about Mumbai. With AC double decker buses, which are more like a closed vehicle, it’s not the same, according to Bharat Gothoskar, a transport historian and the founder of Khaki Tours, which has been providing organized tours for tourists on Nilambari buses for many years.

The customized ride, which usually departs from Colaba and includes stops at the Gateway of India and other significant sights, costs 400 for an hour in South Mumbai. The heritage sites are thoroughly explained to the visitors.

We boarded a journey in Nilambari at 8 o’clock after purchasing our tickets online. The tour was excellent and educational. The majority of the important areas were covered. It is advised that the bus stop at a few locations along the way, according to Mulund resident and college student Ketki Kulkarni.

There are also uncurated rides that a visitor can take for 180 immediately from the starting point. Depending on whether someone wants to ride for an hour or a half-hour, the prices may change.

Source- Hindustan times
Link- https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/mumbai-news/farewell-to-mumbai-s-iconic-double-decker-buses-nilambari-buses-to-be-scrapped-by-best-101693855116063.html


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