New Delhi: Days after opening the ITO Metro station, DMRC is struggling to outwit commuters. As you wait for the train to ITO at Mandi House station, a steady flow of announcements greets the rider. The one repeated often is a warning though: those found getting on the ITO train but heading to Badarpur will be fined.
DMRC officials said since the new station opened, some passengers have taken to coming till ITO, though they have to go to Badarpur, in order to get a seat. To discourage this practice, Delhi Metro has been making announcements warning commuters of a Rs 200 penalty for taking the “reverse” journey.
“This is a temporary phenomenon as the section has just opened. Not too many passengers do this. Passengers are being advised via announcements not to indulge in such reverse journey practices and a special drive has been started to fine errant passengers,” said a DMRC spokesperson. And while no one has been fined so far, Delhi Metro has said it will start penalizing offenders “soon”.
Commuters have a different take though. For many, the problem of travelling to Badarpur in a crowded metro is solved if they just go one station ahead in the opposite direction. “During peak hour, though Mandi House is the first station on the way to Badarpur, it’s still very crowded. However, if you just travel till ITO, the trains are mostly empty and you get a seat,” said a commuter.
Since every third train is to ITO, most commuters prefer to add a station to their journey rather than miss out on a seat.
Incidentally, ITO station has been seeing a steady ridership of 6,000 and above this week. While the ridership was 6,972 on Thursday, it was 6,954 on Wednesday.