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Minister warns DMRC chief of action — Metro fare hike

Minister warns DMRC chief of action — Metro fare hike

The Centre has informed the Kejriwal government that its request to put on hold the proposed Metro fare hike is "legally untenable" as the recommendations of the tariff committee can not be "tempered" with.

Kejriwal, through his letter, also informed the central government to his government's readiness to take over DMRC if it wants.

It was clearly written in letter that as for government suggestion regarding a grant to the DMRC for meeting the gap in their finances, His government is willing to bear half the grant if only a matching grant is provided by the central government.

Besides cooperative federalism, the point remains that the Centre and Delhi government are equal partners in the DMRC, Kejriwal said. Let an assessment be made of the financial gap likely to be created on account of the postponement of the second fare hike and we will be able to bear half of it.

The resolution moved on Wednesday by Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot urged the Union Urban Development Ministry to "quickly and actively intervene" so that the proposed "unlawful and anti-people fare hike" be reversed in the interest of common people and the environment.

Gahlot in a letter addressed to the DMRC chief on Friday said that Singh was nominated by the Delhi government "to put forward the view point of Delhi government in the Board meetings of DMRC as well as other forums and meeting".

He hoped that the spirit of partnership would continue to prevail and a mutually acceptable solution would be found. "But due to inaction of the Delhi government the work was delayed by over 15 months", he said.

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. The DMRC and the Delhi government have been locking horns since the second Metro fare hike from October 10 was proposed.

According to sources, Kejriwal told Mangu that the Metro fare hike will decrease the ridership of the Metro and private operators such as Ola or Uber will be benefitted.

Total fare hike recommended by FFC over about 8 years is only 91% and this comes to less than 7% per year. For all other distance zones, fares will be increased by Rs 10, with the maximum fare for journeys longer than 32kms going up from Rs 50 to Rs 60.

Starting Tuesday, Delhi Metro rides will become costlier by a maximum of Rs 10 for those travelling over two kilometres in the city. The recent controversy has once again put the Delhi chief minister at loggerheads with the central government.