The automatic fare collection system in the upcoming Phase-IV lines of the Delhi Metro will be fully compliant with the National Common Mobility Card (NCMC), and commuters will also be able to use a mobile phone to enter or exit a station on its corridors, DMRC chief Mangu Singh has said.
Asserting that Delhi Metro is a “modern metro system” comparable to the best in the world, he also said that these two facilities might be rolled out at the Airport Express Line by the end of this year. Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March 2019 had launched the indigenously developed NCMC to enable people to pay multiple kinds of transport charges, including for metro and bus services across the country, through a common card.
Dubbed as ‘One Nation One Card’, the inter-operable transport card would allow the holders to also pay their toll taxes, parking charges, retail shopping and even withdraw money. Singh said the facility to use mobile phones to enter or exit automatic fare collection (AFC) gates, are available in major modern systems in various countries, including in the Seoul Metro.
“We are working to continuously improve our system, with better technological and other interventions, to improve our rolling stocks and energy efficiency. In Ph-IV, our AFC system will fully accept the national common mobility cards, which can be used in any cities,” he said.
“Also, a mobile phone will effectively work as smart card, and riders will be able to use to enter or exit the AFC gates, in Ph-IV lines,” Singh said. The managing director of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, however, underlined that e-payment system and technology are fast-evolving and by the time the Ph-IV work is complete, new technologies may emerge.
“But, we have been working on it for quite some time, and the facilities of NCMC and entry and exit using mobile phones might be available by the end of this year on the Airport Express Line” he added. Currently, riders on the Airport Express Line can also enter or exit AFC gates using a QR code on mobile phone that has to be collected from a mertro counter, but the future plan is to have a system whereby commuters can generate their own QR codes on phones and enter through AFC gates using that facility, the top official said.
The DMRC chief said, these two facilities will be first available on the brand new lines to be built under Ph-IV, and hopefully by the time the construction is over, the corridors to be built under this phase as extensions of existing lines, would “also be upgraded” for compliance. Asked if old smart cards will work in Ph-IV lines, he said, “Yes.”