Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Limited (DMRC) on Friday announced several reasons which played a part in massive ridership drop in the month of October. Delhi Metro said that apart from the fare hike, festivities such as Diwali and Chhath could also be behind the drop in its ridership in October. The metro body said that it had a drop of three lakh commuters per day. However, DMRC emphasised on the fact that it will not review its decision of fare hike and stressed that it had been done on the recommendation of a fare fixation committee. The fare fixation committee is a statutory body under the Delhi Metro Act. Interestingly, the Delhi Metro in a statement said that ridership in November has shown a rising trend.
“In October there were five Sundays in comparison to four in September and ridership remains less on holidays than on weekdays. This monthly variation in ridership is dependent on multiple factors like seasons, vacations, holidays, festivals etc,” the statement said. “The month also witnessed extended weekends and holidays due to festivals of Diwali, Chhath Pooja, Bhai Duj, Goverdhan etc. The ridership after the fare revision for many days was actually higher than the ridership before the fare revision,” it said
Earlier, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal took to Twitter and reacted on the fare hike and dropping ridership. “That many passengers have taken to other means of tpt, thus increasing pollution n congestion on roads. Metro fare hike has not benefitted anyone,” he said.
Earlier on October 10, DMRC had implemented the fare hike that led to a rise of around Rs 10 for nearly every distance slab. The recent fare hike came barely five months after another hike of up to 100 percent.
The DMRC’s decision to hike passenger fares had triggered a rift between the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP government and the Centre. While the AAP mounted a stiff opposition to the hike, DMRC and Union Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri backed the move insisting that it was necessary to maintain metro’s financial as well as operational health.