Reacting to a recent media report that the average daily ridership of the Delhi Metro has dropped by over 3 lakhs, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has sought an explanation from union minister Hardeep Singh Puri, alleging that apart from directly affecting the revenues of the Delhi Metro, the fare hike has also forced the metro commuters to switch to other modes of transport ‘which is causing an increase in the air pollution levels in Delhi’. “Higher metro tariffs also directly affect the travel pattern of the economically weaker sections of the society,” the AAP said in a statement.
“The Aam Aadmi Party would like to know from the union minister of state for urban development Hardeep Singh Puri, who is these days taking a keen interest in politics of Delhi, what is his response to the fact that following the twin metro hike in 2017, average daily metro ridership has fallen by over three lakh daily?” the party said. The AAP also questioned the official BJP stand on the metro fare hike. “Can any of the seven BJP MPs from Delhi show a single letter they had written to the central government, opposing the metro fare hike? Can any BJP MP show a single speech/statement they had given in the parliament or outside, against this anti-people decision? Does the Delhi BJP endorse the statement of Mr Hardeep Singh Puri that the fare hike was mandatory?” the AAP asked.
The AAP said it will make the Delhi Metro fare hike by the BJP’s central government an issue for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections. Earlier, the state BJP had said that the Delhi government has a 50 per cent stake in the DMRC and there can be no fare hike without its consent.