Delhi gets its common mobility card

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday launched a pilot project enabling the usage of a common card for commuters aboard both public buses and the Delhi Metro, terming it a big step related to the city’s transportation sector.

Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government claimed, became the first city in the country to have a common mobility card for the commuting needs of its citizens, which can at present be used on 200 Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) and 50 cluster buses plying on different routes, apart from metro trains.

Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot was present during the launch along with top government and DMRC officials. The entire fleet of the DTC, the government said in a statement, which is composed of around 3,900 DTC and over 1,600 cluster buses, would be equipped to offer the service by April 1 this year.

In the meantime, buses plying to different routes from the DTC’s Raj Ghat Depot-I and Rohini Depot-I and those on the Cluster Scheme’s BBM depot-II would offer the facility.

‘Big step’

“It’s a big step in the transport sector that will facilitate the seamless travel of people in Delhi,” Mr. Kejriwal told reporters after a short ride on a DTC bus. Earlier, the Delhi government and the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) had agreed to authorise the Metro smart card to be used as common mobility card for paying fares in DTC and cluster buses.

The Reserve Bank of India gave approval to the DMRC in February, 2017 for operating its pre-paid instrument called PPI-MTS (Prepaid Instrument — Mass Transit System) for this purpose. The DMRC smart card is the first to get authorisation under this category, said a government official.

Cards availability

The smart card will be tapped on the Electronic Ticketing Machines (ETMs) available with bus conductors for payment of fares. Smart cards can be purchased from any metro station in the city.

The common mobility cards will be made available at all the ISBTs, railway stations and tourist information centres of the Delhi Tourism Department in the coming months, the official said.

A pipe dream since 2010, when it was originally intended to be functional well in time for the Commonwealth Games in October and be the answer to London’s Oyster among similar cards operational abroad, the Department had successfully concluded a trial of the project — with conductors using Delhi Metro cards on around 200 cluster and around 50 low-floor DTC buses.

Technical issues

One of the most significant technical issues related to common mobility earlier, according to an official, was whether it was to be provided through Delhi Metro smart cards or separate ones developed for the DTC with a final decision to opt for the former.

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Printable version | May 7, 2021 1:18:33 AM |

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