In a first for DMRC, state-of-the-art feeder electric buses began operations in the city from Thursday to boost last-mile connectivity for commuters with the Delhi Metro network. Only passengers having a Delhi Metro smart card or metro DTC smart card will be allowed to avail of the services of these e-buses, officials said.
They can use smart cards to pay for their cashless travel since these buses are operating in a fully contactless way, and will not have a conductor on board, enabling entry and exit through turnstiles on the bus by using the smart card, they said.
The metro smart card is already being used in DTC buses by commuters. No cash payment will be permitted and services will be available for metro commuters only, the DMRC said. The DMRC tweeted on Thursday to announce the starting of the services.
"And we're off! Feeder electric buses have started operations today morning for the first time in Delhi on trial basis by DMRC. Only metro passengers having a Delhi Metro Smart Card or Metro DTC Smart Card will be allowed to avail the services on these e-buses," it tweeted.
In a statement, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation had earlier said it will be introducing 100 feeder e-buses in all by the end of October in a phased manner for enhanced last-mile commuting experience to the public, from 14 metro stations, covering 10 routes.
"Feeder electric buses are being introduced for the first time in Delhi on a trial basis by Delhi Metro from this Thursday, under which 25 low floor e-buses (24-seater buses) will be plying on two routes," the DMRC had said on Tuesday.
For buses starting from metro stations, the entry of the passengers will be permitted only from the metro stations and the bus will stop only at the designated stops for dropping the passengers, officials said.
Entry of passengers will not be permitted at other stoppages on the route. Similarly, for buses going to metro stations, the entry shall be allowed from all stoppages en route, but exit shall be allowed only at metro stations. This is to ensure that only genuine metro passengers use this service. Passengers will be allowed to enter from the front gate and exit from the rear gate of the bus, the statement said.
One route (MC-721) is from Shastri Park Metro station to Gokulpuri Metro station via Khajuri Chowk, spanning 10.3 km. The other one (ML-05) spanning 7.7 km is from Shastri park metro station to Mother Dairy, the DMRC said.
The fare structure is Rs 10 for 0-4 km; Rs 15 for 4-8 km; Rs 20 for 8-12 km; and Rs 25 for journeys beyond 12 km, it said. These state-of-the-art e-buses are specially designed and equipped with an intelligent transport system with CCTVs and GPS facility, officials said.
These vehicles are provided with an anti-skid, anti-brake locking system and will not move till all doors are closed. The doors will also not close on detection of any obstruction, they said.
For the differently-abled and elderly passengers, buses are also fitted with ramps and anchorage for a wheelchair. For handling any emergency situation, these buses are also equipped with a panic button and a stop request button, the DMRC said.
For the maintenance and stabling of these buses, dedicated depots have been also set up at Shastri Park and Majlis Park along with an operational control center to monitor the vehicles, officials said.
There is a 2.5 MW electric connection facility for the charging of e-buses. For regular cleaning of these e-buses, automatic wash plants have also been provided at both the e-bus depots, it said.