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Delhi Metro ridership down by 1.5 lakh per day in June post fare hike

Delhi Metro, which has registered a sustained growth in ridership, saw a decline of 44.80 lakh passengers in June 2017 compared to the same month in 2016 — also a drop of 50 lakh passengers compared to May this year. Metro recorded a ridership of 1.08 lakh in June 2016.

delhi Updated: Aug 29, 2017 12:53 IST
Faizan Haidar
Faizan Haidar
Hindustan Times
Delhi Metro,DMRC,Metro
Delhi Metro, which has registered a sustained growth in ridership, saw a decline of 44.80 lakh passengers in June 2017 compared to the same month in 2016. (Saumya Khandelwal/HT PHOTO)

The fare hike this May cost Delhi Metro nearly 1.5 lakh passengers per day in June.

Delhi Metro, which has registered a sustained growth in ridership, saw a decline of 44.80 lakh passengers in June 2017 compared to the same month in 2016 — also a drop of 50 lakh passengers compared to May this year. Metro recorded a ridership of 1.08 lakh in June 2016.

From May 10, the minimum passenger fare was increased from Rs 8 to Rs 10 and the maximum fare from Rs 30 to Rs 50. Majority of Metro passengers travel a distance of 15 km and the fare in this slab was increased from Rs 18 to Rs 40. This fare structure, however, will be effective till September. From October 1, the minimum fare for travelling a distance of over 2 km will rise further by Rs 10.

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, however, says the decline in ridership could be attributed to many other reasons. “The variation in ridership is in the range of 1% and 5 % for all three months. In May this year, when fares were revised, there was an increase in ridership vis-a-vis May 2016,” said a DMRC spokesperson.

“This amount of variation is considered natural for any given month or period. As the system is spread over 218 km, a fluctuation in ridership is bound to happen. It could also be dependent on multiple factors such as weather, vacations, strikes or agitations on significant days, festival rush, etc,” the spokesperson said.

Data shows that the impact of fare hike was visible from May onwards. In May 2017, Delhi Metro handled eight lakh more passengers compared to May 2016. But, this pales in comparison with the 34 lakh extra passengers carried in April 2017, compared to the same month in 2016.

“At the end of May, DMRC added a network of 8 km and the ridership was expected to increase. Every year, the ridership increases but this is probably the first time, ridership has seen a decline,” said an official.

The DMRC has been requesting a fare increase since 2009. It faced obstacles as the Centre had failed to set up a fare panel, which finally saw the light of day in 2016. Since 2009, electricity tariff has gone up by over 90%, accounting for almost 30% of DMRC’s total operating costs.

Fall in ridership due to fare hikes is a trend witnessed on mass-transits across the world. Surveys predict reduction in 3% ridership, if fares are increased by 10%. .

First Published: Aug 28, 2017 23:51 IST