Commuters travelling between East Renfrewshire and Glasgow are victims of a ‘great train robbery,’ a politician has claimed.

West of Scotland MSP Neil

Bibby is demanding a ‘fare’ deal for those who are having to spend as much as five per cent of their monthly wage to travel to the city from Neilston.

The cost of a standard monthly season ticket linking the two

locations is £95, which Mr Bibby said is five per cent of the average Scottish salary.

He told the Barrhead News: “The SNP government is presiding over a great train robbery and it is passengers and commuters in Neilston who are having their pockets picked.

“When you compare both the service and fare costs with other parts of Europe, Scotland’s rail service is severely lagging behind.

“This is ironic, given that SNP ministers used to claim the deal they agreed with Abellio was world leading.”

Mr Bibby believed the figures strengthen the case for public ownership of Scotland’s railways, with profits being used to reduce fares.

He added: “The truth is passengers are paying a fortune, often for delayed and overcrowded trains.

“When their train isn’t cancelled, they can’t even be guaranteed to stop at the station they are supposed to.

“This strengthens Labour’s case to bring the railways back into public ownership so we have a service that actually works for hard-working commuters.”

A spokesman for the ScotRail Alliance said 85 per cent of its revenue comes from fares set by the Scottish Government and this decides how much its customers pay.

“We are investing millions of pounds in Scotland’s railway to better connect our communities and support the economy,” added the spokesman.

“Money from fares is reinvested to improve services, customer

experience and track and signals, as we continue to build the best railway Scotland has ever had.”

The Government defended its efforts to support commuters.

A spokesman for Transport Minister Humza Yousaf said: “Scotland has the lowest rail fares increase in the UK, with the average regulated increase below the rate of inflation.

“We will take no lectures from Labour on this issue. It was the SNP government that secured the right for a public sector operator to bid for the franchise, after being repeatedly denied that right by successive Labour and Tory UK governments.

“Our consistent view is there ought to be a level playing field

between the private and public sector in bidding for rail franchises.

“This will enable us to ensure the delivery of rail services in Scotland that deliver maximum economic and social benefit.

“We are considering the suitability of existing public

sector bodies to bid for the

franchise contract and the steps required to create a new public sector body, if it is necessary to do so.”