NEW DELHI (Metro Rail News): On Tuesday, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal asked the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to reconsider its view on involving the fare fixation committee (FFC) in its proposal to offer free rides to women in Delhi-NCR.
In a meeting held on Tuesday morning, The CM conveyed this to DMRC managing director Mangu Singh and other Metro officials. The Delhi government questioned why the DMRC did not recommend the FFC’s approval when the Centre had proposed concessions for senior citizens and students in the Metro last year. Reiterating its stand that the FFC’s approval was not necessary as the scheme does not require increasing or decreasing Metro fares.
A government official said on condition of anonymity “The DMRC will look into the matter now. It acknowledged that getting FFC’s approval was not recommended for the Centre’s proposal. The Metro has even started work towards Centre’s proposal and floated tenders for works amounting to about ₹20 crore”.
DMRC clarified that it started work on Centre’s proposal “in anticipation” of an approval. The DMRC had maintained the same in its proposal on the free-travel for women scheme said by another official.
DMRC’s report says that “Anticipating this requirement by the FFC in future, DMRC has already processed for modification/alteration and addition to the fare collection system where non-transferable smartcard shall be issued and the genuineness of the beneficiary while taking benefit shall be controlled by technology”.
Union minister for housing and urban affairs Hardeep Singh Puri, after following the steep hike in Metro fares in 2017, had last year asked the DMRC to introduce “a technology-based solution” to give fare concessions to senior citizens and students.
The Delhi metro rail corporation (DMRC) said that by the February this year it would install biometric-based ticketing system to offer such concessions. This system is to be integrated with the existing automatic fare collection (AFC) gates at the stations.