New Delhi, Feb 1: Delhi Metro fares may be hiked soon after the Assembly polls as the government has initiated a process to review the rates which were last raised in 2009.
The Union Urban Development Ministry has sent a proposal to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet to set up a fare-fixation panel which will submit its report within three months of getting approved.
Retired Justice AK Srivastava has been chosen as the Chairman of the Committee, Delhi Metro sources said. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) Chief Mangu Singh had recently indicated that a fare hike has become imperative with a significant rise in the operational costs.
"Fare hike is long overdue. Now when the committee will be formed and when it will give its recommendations is not in my hand," Singh had said, clearly indicating that a fare hike was on the cards.
Delhi Metro can revise its fares only on recommendation of the three-member committee constituted by the Union government from time to time.
Apart from a person who is or has been a high court judge, the committee comprises of the urban development secretary and Delhi's finance secretary.
Fares were last revised in 2009 when the minimum fare was raised from Rs 6 to Rs 8 while the maximum fare was hiked to Rs 30 from Rs 22.
During DMRC's 12th anniversary celebrations, its operations director Sharat Sharma had stated that almost 40 per cent of metro's overall expenses go towards paying electricity bills with the power consumption rising to around 63 crore units amounting to almost Rs 450 crore in 2014-15.