From May 21, metro railway commuters in Delhi will have to pay Rs. 150 for a smart card, up from Rs. 100 currently. While the security deposit has been retained at Rs. 50, the initial minimum value of the card has been hiked from Rs. 50 to Rs. 100.
The minimum top-up value has also been hiked from Rs. 100 to Rs. 200. The increase in minimum value is in sync with the shortly expected inauguration on the Mandi House Line.
According to DMRC spokesman Anuj Dayal 12,000 smart cards are refunded everyday, nine percent of which are bought and refunded on the same day. Thirty percent of all cards are sold and refunded in the same month.
This has led to a pile up of nine lakh smart cards. A DMRC sources said that most customers insist on being issued new smart cards and not used ones, so the bulk of used cards are useless. Hence DMRC has also hiked the ‘administration charges’ deducted from the security deposit while refunding. The charges have been increased from Rs. 5 to Rs. 20.
Around 70 percent of commuters use smart cards and about one crore such cards are in circulation. These cards offer a ten percent discount on fares.