Chennai: In what seem to be an embarrassment of sorts, commuters at Chennai Metro were surprised with card kiosks at metro stations rejecting new notes. The kiosks are installed for commuters to recharge smart cards to buy tokens for rail ticket.
The kiosks that are made to ensure commuters do not have to wait in long queues. But ironically they had to wait in long queues at ticket counters since the electronic recharge kiosks were rejecting new notes. The kiosk was also rejecting smaller denomination like Rs10, Rs 50 and Rs 200.
These machines are not compatible with the new dosh. In fact these machines end up performing task other than what was asked for them – that is reducing waiting time for passengers. But these kiosks have ended up extending the waiting time further.
As per an employee working in the underground hub of Central Metro shared that these electronic kiosks are not programmed to accept new notes. That is why there is technical glitch.
The employee further added that one cannot transact with new Rs 500 notes, this being the case even before RBI issuing new currency notes. As per current set up, commuter can use kiosks to recharge for minimum Rs 100. For amount lower than this, they have to stand at the ticket counter to recharge their card.
Chennai Metro Rail Ltd (CMRL) has put up kiosks at all the metro stations based on the number of commuters on daily basis. Those stations where daily traffic is more, CMRL has installed more than two kiosks. Vadapalani, Koyambedu, Alandur, and airport stations have more than two kiosks. Chennai Metro stations that have less traffic have one or two kiosks each.
Interestingly, CMRL introduced smart card machine to improve travel experience of commuters. It also made its usage mandatory when it opened the first underground line between Nehru Park and Koyambedu in May 2017. Ironically, it later started issuing token to manage the traffic.
CMRL has assured that the kiosks will be tweaked and commuters will be able to use the machine within two weeks.