Home >Politics >Policy >Delhi Metro fare hike kicks in today

New Delhi: Delhi Metro rides in the national capital just got costlier with a new passenger fare structure starting at Rs10 and going up to Rs50 coming into force on Wednesday.

Divided into six fare slabs, the new fare structure, Monday through Saturday, is: up to 2km—Rs10; 2 to 5km—Rs15; 5 to 12km—Rs20; 12 to 21km—Rs30; 21 to 32km—Rs40; and for journeys of over 32km—Rs50.

Those carrying a smart card and travelling during the off-peak hours—between 6am-8am, 12pm-5pm and 9pm onwards—will be able to avail a discount of 20%. On Sundays and national holidays (26 January, 15 August and 2 October), there would be a discount of around Rs10 across slabs.

Tariff would rise further from 1 October, when the maximum will turn Rs60.

The hikes were announced on 8 May after the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) board cleared the recommendations of a fare-fixation committee. DMRC said the hike, following a gap of seven years, was crucial towards sustaining its operations against the backdrop of rising operational costs, like increase in power tariff, growing manpower bill and maintenance charge.

“Although it would not turn us profitable overnight, it would at least prevent a further rise in the operating ratio of the company, which is around 84 at the moment," a metro official said. It means DMRC spends around 4 on operations for every 00 it earns. It was around 4 in 2009, when the last hike was effected and since then it has steadily risen, metro revenue director K.K. Saberwal said.

Accounts of DMRC, where the state and Centre hold equal equity, have been in the red for years now when factors such as the loans it has taken from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) are considered.

Annually, metro shells out an average Rs500 crore interest on loans it has taken from the JICA and the principal amount comes to around another Rs600-800 crore. Metro’s operating ratio will further change when its upcoming corridors, as part of its Phase III expansion, are launched, taking the total length of the network to around 350-km from the existing 213-km.

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