Commuting by Delhi Metro to be costlier from tomorrow

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The Delhi chief minister had written to the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry to stall the fare hike recommended by the 4th Fare Fixation Committee.

"As you know, the central government and the Delhi government are 50-50 owners of the DMRC and its equity etc. have been shared in this proportion all along", Kejriwal said in the letter.

He also said that as per existing guidelines, the operational losses are the sole responsibility of state governments and hence there is no question of Centre sharing the grants-in-aid to DMRC required to stop the fare hike.

Face-off between the Delhi government and the Centre on the issue of Delhi metro fair hike continued as the minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri sent a detailed response to Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal on the suggestions made by him in his letter. It has locked horns with the Delhi Metro Rail Corp (DMRC) over the impending second hike this year, following the recommendation of the fourth FFC.

From 10 October, for a distance of up to two kilometres, the fare will remain Rs 10, but for a distance between two and five kilometres, it will go up from Rs 15 to Rs 20.

"If the Central Government agrees, the Delhi Government would be willing to take over the DMRC".

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Citing the example of Kolkata Metro, Kejriwal said as the central government bears 100% of loss for it; bearing 50% loss in case of Delhi doesn't seem hard.

The Minister said that advising the nominees of the central and state governments on the Board of DMRC to postpone the hike for a few months - which Kejriwal called a "simpler course" - was "not in conformity" with the Act.

The Delhi Metro, which has been operational in the national capital since 2002, carries around 27 lakh passengers every day.

Deepening the contention between the Centre and the Delhi Government, Kejriwal also suggested that his government is willing to take over DMRC and it would be able to fund the metro by improving its efficiency. When DMRC board meeting was convened in the past, representatives of Delhi government sought time stating that they were yet to study the recommendations of FFC.

The Metro fares were last revised in May when the minimum tariff was raised from Rs 8 to Rs 10.

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