The new fare structure translates into varied increase for Metro traveller in Delhi-NCR.
New Delhi: From college students to government officials, commuters have begun to feel the impact of the hike in Delhi Metro fare, with some saying they were planning to switch to car-pooling on a long-term basis.
Aroma Bhargava, 19, a Delhi University student, is not happy with the increase in fare, which came into effect on Tuesday. “My college is in Chanakyapuri. I travel from Moolchand to Race Course, traversing through Violet and Yellow lines. When I heard about the hike, my immediate reaction was like — ‘I am now switching to app-based cabs’,” she said.
Being a student, Bhargava said, she does not have “much of a budget”. “So I will carpool more,” she told a news agency. Barring the minimum fare of Rs 10 for a distance of 0-2 km, which will remain the same, fares were hiked for all other slabs. The new fare structure translates into varied increase for Metro traveller in Delhi-NCR.
The hike is most likely to hit the poor and the lower middle class, especially those commuting daily to Delhi from the national capital region, such as Gurgaon, Faridabad, Noida and Ghaziabad.
A Metro official said the minimum hike was Rs 5 and the maximum Rs 10. Smartcard users will continue to get 10 per cent discount, so would those who use Metro during non-peak hours — between start of the Metro service till 8 am; between noon and 5 pm; and from 9 pm till the close of service.
The latest increase drew strong reactions from commuters, with some saying they would consider alternative public transport. “The hike is not fair. Who will be happy with such a steep rise, that too twice in a year?” said Ajay, a 40-year-old finance sector employee who commutes from Paschim Vihar to Rajiv Chowk.
“It (fare) has almost doubled. Till yesterday, I was charged Rs 27 and today I shelled out `40 for the same distance,” he said. Arvind Tripathi (28), who works for a Japanese firm, said: “I paid Rs 60 today from Bata Chowk to Rajiv Chowk. This is not a good thing. Metro may be incurring losses but who isn’t?”
Another commuter, Sushant, who is a theatre artist, was also unhappy. He said the hike was not justified as there is no improvement in the services. This is the second hike by Delhi in the last six months. When DMRC raised the fare by Rs 20 in May, it announced that fares will be revised again in October. The fare hike was approved by the Fare Fixation Committee of three members, one each from the Delhi and Central governments and the third, a retired high court judge. The DMRC has defended the fare hike, saying it was needed to “maintain a world-class service”.