Delhi Metro fare hike: Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee president Ajay Maken has launched a scathing attack against the Narendra Modi and Arvind Kejriwal-led governments in the Centre and state over proposed metro fare hike. “Both Modi’s central government and the Kejriwal government are throttling the Delhi Metro with their political gimmicks. The Fourth Fare Fixation Committee report said the fare being charged from the passengers on the Airport Express Line is less than the maximum fare recommended by the 3rd FFC, but the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) proposed no changes in the fare structure. This means that the 4th FFC report was not binding on the government to implement it in totality,” Maken said. Maken also demanded that Centre and the Delhi government should subsidize the ticket rates. Will
The report of the 4th fare fixation committee(FFC) was with the central government and the Kejriwal government for past 15 months but they both did not challenge the fare hike, Maken told reporters. “Is the report so sacrosanct and binding that it cannot be challenged in a court of law?” he asked.
Based on a recommendation of the 4th FFC, the Delhi Metro effected the fare hike, leading to a rise of around Rs 10 for nearly every distance slab last month. This came barely five months of another hike of up to 100 per cent. Citing Mumbai Metro fares, he said that the Maharashtra Metropolitan Rail Development Authority (MMRDA) had challenged fare hike recommended by fare fixation committee in the high court and the fare increase stayed.
On November 25, Kejriwal said that the steep fare hike will “kill” Delhi Metro. CM Kejriwal also asked what purpose the metro serves if people stop using it. “This steep hike in metro fare will kill Delhi Metro. If people stop using it, then what purpose does it serve?,” Kejriwal tweeted. The chief minister said that recent metro fare hike has not benefited anyone.
Kejriwal, who along with his Aam Aadmi Party had opposed the fare hike, had also said that many passengers have taken to other means of transport, leading to increased pollution and congestion on the city’s roads. Last month, he had called metro fare hike “anti-people”. Also, the Delhi Assembly had passed a resolution to oppose the fare increase by the Delhi Metro with Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, alleging that it was a “conspiracy” to benefit private cab companies.
It has been learnt that the metro’s daily average ridership came down to 24.2 lakh in October from 27.4 lakh in September, a fall of around 11 per cent. On October 10, the DMRC effected the fare hike, leading to a rise of around Rs 10 for nearly every distance slab. This came barely five months of another hike of up to 100 per cent.