Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) registered a ₹18 lakh increase in revenue from sale and recharge of smart cards from November 1-21, in comparison to revenue collected for the same period in October.
Officials said that many commuters recharged their smart cards for six months in advance, as payments were accepted in scrapped currency notes.
UPSRTC has two smart card services in place — monthly seasonal ticket (MST) and open-ended cards. While MST card holders can travel only on fixed routes, open-ended card holders can travel on any route across the state.
“Those who have to travel every day by bus were falling short of cash after ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes were scrapped. Our conductors suggested them to get smart cards made as we are accepting the old notes,” PK Bose, regional manager, UPSRTC, Ghaziabad, said.
Officials said that the smart card service is convenient and cheaper. A passenger can get it recharged at the point-of-sale counter at bus depots. Conductors in the buses can validate it with the help of an electronic card reader, which will show details of the passenger and the card, including remaining balance and permitted destinations. The registration charge for a card is ₹50.
According to official data, 103 new open-ended smart cards were issued from October 1-21 while it increased to 239 from November 1-21. Similarly, the number of MST cards issued from October 1-21 was 72 and this increased to 341 in November. As many as 900 buses ply every day from bus depots across the city.
“Including the total number of open-ended card new registration and recharge of recharges, the department had collected around ₹33 lakh in Novembers, opposed to the ₹15 lakh in October,” Bose said.
The department also recorded a hike of ₹4.5 lakh from sales and recharge of MST cards. “In October, there was a collection of ₹14 lakh and this increased to ₹18 lakh in November. There is no cap on recharging smart cards and hence, many passengers recharged their cards for more than ₹10,000 as well. However, the cards are valid for 12 months only,” Bose said.
Meanwhile, Gautam Budh Nagar officials said they recorded a ₹60,000 hike in revenue from the sale of smart cards since the demonetisation move.
“The department collected ₹1,40,000 in sale and recharge of smart cards from October 24 to November 8, while it collected ₹2 lakh from November 9 to November 22,” Sharad Singh, regional manager, UPSRTC, Gautam Buddh Nagar, said.