DELHI METRO FARES AT PAR WITH OTHER METROS, HIKE NECESSARY TO MEET INPUT COSTS AND TO KEEP PROVIDING WORLD CLASS SERVICE
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) which has been operating in the capital city of Delhi since 2002 is presently carrying around 27 lakh passengers everyday and has become the lifeline of the city with a punctuality of over 99.7 percent, providing world class services to its commuters.To continue to provide a world class service, it is essential to operate as a healthy organization.
Keeping this in view, the provision has been made for the periodic revision of fares through a Fare Fixation Committee (FFC) in the Delhi Metro Operations& Maintenance Act, 2002. However, since 2009, there has been no fare increase whereas the input cost for DMRC has increased by over 105 % in Energy, 139 % in staff cost and by 213 % for repair and maintenance.
In addition, the DMRC has taken a huge loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and a payment of Rs. 26,760 Cr is still outstanding which has to be paid back. Morevoer, DMRC has to provide for depreciation and replacement of various assets such as the trains (Rolling Stock) which have a life of 30 years and will have to be replaced subsequently and for this provision has to be kept. Inspite of operating efficiently, the DMRC is making a net loss of Rs. 378 Cr in view of the above factors.The long gap of over 8 years in the formation of FFC has resulted in the fare hike in percentages, which if seen on yearly basis, is in the reasonable range of 7-8 % per annum taking into account the two phase of the fare Hike (Phase-I: May 2017, Phase-II; October 2017)
. The DMRC is constantly making efforts to reduce its operating cost by going for solar power projects and increasing the energy efficiency at its stations besides introducing new initiatives on Property Development and Property Business front. DMRC is consistently increasing number of trains, AFC gates, lifts, escalators and other passenger services which also result in the increase of input cost but are essential for providing a world class service.Once Phase-III of the Delhi Metro is fully operational, commuters on many routes will have to travel shorter distances and they will be paying lesser fares (see Annexure-I). A comparison of metro fares of many Metros in India shows that the DMRC’s maximum fare level is either less or comparable with other metros which are operating In India inspite of a higher per capita income in Delhi (See Annexure-II).
As the metro system is getting older, more maintenance procedures, preventive & corrective checks, safety & reliability checks, replacement of electrical fittings(such as insulators), base plates, rail testing etc. are required which is essential for providing a world class service, and which also leads to increased cost in overall operations and maintenance.The Metro fares have been decided independently by the Fare Fixation Committee which is a statutory body. Annexure 1 Annexure 2CC/DMRC