Subscriber Login

Features

Delhi Metro Success Story: Proudly serving India’s capital region [free access]

June 1, 2017

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation was established in 1995 for the implementation and subsequent operations of the mass rapid transit system (MRTS) in Delhi, India. It was incorporated with equal equity participation from the Government of India (GoI) and the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD).

 

Delhi Metro commenced operations in 2002 and is well regarded as a financial and a technical success. DMRC has gained reputation in its role as a metro system developer and is actively consulting on many national and international metro system development projects.

 

Upon its inauguration, the metro system was so well received that on Day 1 of operations, about 1.2 million passengers came to use the metrorail system, which was six times the design capacity. The modern, air-conditioned trains, contactless tokens in place of paper tickets of buses, escalators at stations, clean platforms, and convenient passenger information system provided a great relief to daily commuters.

 

In spite of having one of the lowest fares in the world for 15 years (as of May 2017), the system has been making an operational profit. It has grown to over 200 km in just 15 years and is continuously expanding.

 

Current operational network

  

The Delhi Metro system is being developed in various phases. Currently, Phases I and II, and four sections of Phase III, comprising six lines, are operational. Table 1 provides details of the current operational network.

 

Table 1: Current operational network

Phases

Length

Stations

Commencement of operations

Phase I

65.10

59

2002

Phase II

124.93

85

2008

Phase III

27.73

19

2015

Total

217.76

163

-

Source: DMRC, Global Mass Transit Research

  

Funding

  

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has been the biggest contributor in the financing of both phases. It is followed by the centre and state governments (both having equal contribution).

 

Table 2 indicates a comparison of JICA’s financing for the two phases.

 

Table 2: JICA loan for Delhi Metro Phases I and II

Phase

Total value of funds (INR billion)

Share in total funding

Interest rate

Phase I

63

60 per cent

1.3 per cent -2.3 per cent

Phase II

102.31

54.47 per cent

1.2 per cent -1.4 per cent

Source: DMRC

 

Two new sources of funding were introduced during Phase II:

 

 

Figure 1 shows the funding structures of Phase I and II.

 

Figure I: Funding structure of Phase I and Phase II

 image001_957

Source: DMRC

  

Rolling stock

 

The Delhi Metro currently deploys a fleet of 227 train sets, comprising 128 six-coach trains, 58 eight-coach trains and 41 four-coach trains across all its corridors.

 

DMRC is procuring 258 new coaches to be deployed on three lines (Red, Blue and Yellow). Of these, 162 coaches will be supplied by Bombardier and 96 coaches will be supplied by Bharat Earth Movers Limited (BEML). The delivery is scheduled to be completed by end-2017.

 

Figure 2 shows operational rolling stock fleet as of financial year end (March 31) for the period 2012-2016.

 

Figure 2: Operational rolling stock fleet (FY 2012- FY 2016)

image003_504

Source: DMRC

  

Fare system

  

Contactless smart cards and radio-frequency identification (RFID) tokens are used for fare collection. In May/June 2013, DMRC launched an online recharge facility for smart cards through ICICI Bank and monthly pass scheme for AEX.

 

In May 2016, the Government of Delhi announced plans to launch a Common Mobility Card for travel in Delhi Metro, DTC buses and cluster buses.  DMRC is providing assistance to develop the revenue-sharing model.

 

Further, in December 2016, DMRC launched a pilot project for digital payment options on 10 stations from January 1, 2017. The 10 stations are Rohini East, Rohini West, MG Road, Mayur Vihar Phase-1, Nirman Vihar, Tilak Nagar, Janakpuri West, Noida Sector 15, Nehru Place and Kailash Colony. The transactions for token and smart card purchase/top up at these stations can be done through e-wallet (PayTM) and debit and credit cards.

 

In May 2017, DMRC revised its fares almost after eight years of service. The fares were revised upwards on an average of 66 per cent. While the lowest fare was revised from INR8 to INR10, the highest fare was increased from INR30 to INR50. The fare increase has been attributed to burgeoning costs of inputs, staff, energy, maintenance.

 

The fare revision is planned to be implemented in two phases:

 

 

Table 3 shows the fare revision in two phases.

 

Table 3: Fare revision during Phase I and II (May 2017)

Distance Zones (km)

Phase I Fare (INR)

Phase II Fare (INR)

0-2

10

10

2-5

15

20

5-12

20

30

12-21

30

40

21-32

40

50

>32

50

60

 Source: DMRC

  

Ridership

  

Delhi Metro has seen a consistent growth in ridership since its commencement of operations in 2002. The increase in ridership can be attributed to high quality of service and accessibility due to network expansion.

 

In the last five years (FY 2012 – FY 2017), the ridership has seen cumulative growth of about 43 per cent. Figure 3 shows the growth in ridership over the since 2012.

 

Figure 3: Ridership growth

 image005_529

Source: DMRC

 

Upon the recent fare hike of the metrorail system, DMRC has reported that ridership has fallen by 3 per cent as more people have started using alternative modes of transportation.

 

Financial performance

  

DMRC generates its revenues from fare box, non-fare sources as well as consulting assignments undertaken for other metro projects.

 

Figure 4 shows the revenue and expenditure of DMRC since 2011.

 

Figure 4: DMRC revenue and expenditure

 image007_603

Source: DMRC

 

During 2011-12 to 2015-16, the total revenue and total expenditure of DMRC increased at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.92 per cent and 20.09 per cent, respectively.

 

However, the company has been continuously reporting net losses after tax, with the net losses widening drastically in 2015-16. A primary reason for the dismal financial performance of DMRC was failure in fare revision and rising input costs. Barring 2008-09, DMRC did not post net profit. It is estimated that DMRC incurs a loss of almost INR10 million per day.

 

The timid growth witnessed in revenue has been attributed to growth in revenues due to increase in ridership with ongoing capital investment. However, the gains have fallen short of making up for the losses.

 

Capital projects

 

Phase III

 

This phase involves development of seven corridors, which together span 160.57 km and cover 109 stations, by 2018. Table 4 provides the details of the 8 stretches, spanning 132.82 km, which are currently under construction.

 

Table 4: Phase III under construction stretches

Stretch 

Length (km)

Stations (no.)

Expected Completion

Majilis Park - Shiv Vihar  (Pink Line)

58.59

38

Apr 2018

Janakpuri West-Kalindi Kunj-Botanical Garden (Magenta Line)

38.23

25

Sep 2017

Dwarka-Najafgarh

4.29

3

Dec 2017

Mundka-Bahadurgarh

11.18

7

Dec 2017

Noida Sector 62 - Noida City Centre

6.67

6

2018

Escorts Mujesar-Ballabgarh

3.2

2

2017

Dilshad Garden-New Bus Adda

9.6

8

2018

Samaypur Badli-Siraspur

1.06

1

2018

Total

132.82

90

-

 Source: DMRC

 

Funding: The estimated investment for Phase III is INR410.79 billion. Figure 5 shows the funding details for the Phase III.

 

Figure 5: Funding details for Phase III

 image009_511

Source: DMRC

 

Phase IV

 

This phase involves the development of six corridors, which together span 103.93 km. Table 5 provides the details of the corridors.

 

Table 5: Details of Phase IV corridors

Corridor

Length (km)

No. of stations

Route

Delhi Metro Phase IV Aerocity-Tughlakabad Corridor

20.2

15

The line will span from Tughlakabad to Aerocity.

Delhi Metro Phase IV Inderlok-Indraprastha Corridor

12.58

10

The line will span from Inderlok to Indraprastha.

Delhi Metro Phase IV Lajpat Nagar-Saket G block Corridor

7.96

7

The line will span from Saket G block to Lajpat Nagar. This line will be a branch of the planned Tughlakabad – Aerocity line.

Delhi Metro Phase IV Mukundpur-Maujpur Corridor

12.54

6

The line will extend from Mukundpur to Maujpur.

Delhi Metro Phase IV R.K. Ashram-Janakpuri Corridor

28.92

25

The line will extend from Janakpuri to R.K. Ashram.

Delhi Metro Phase IV Rithala-Narela Corridor

21.73

16

The line will extend from Rithala to Narela.

Total

103.93

79

-

Source: DMRC

 

Funding: JICA has expressed interest in funding the project by providing loan at an interest rate of 0.3 per cent for a repayment of 40 years with a condition that 30 per cent of procurement for the projects will be provided by Japanese companies. 

 

Conclusion

 

The success story of DMRC has been published in various international newspapers. It has been termed as World's Best Practice (The Sydney Morning Herald, Australia) and A Successful Planning and Management (Mauritius local news paper).

 

There are various factors which contributed for the success of the metrorail system. The deadlines and investments for the project were set realistic and the project was carried as per the timeline announced and budget allocated. DMRC had an exemplary leadership team. It ensured that the contractors delivered the work on time and as per budget. Most of the contracts were divided between various companies, so that timely delivery of work could be ensured.

 

Currently, DMRC ensures that 99.97 per cent of trains arrive within one minute of the scheduled time. Even during the peak hours, the trains do not suffer breakdown. There are no accidents on the metro system. Passenger satisfaction is high and discipline is ensured to keep the metro clean. Further, the system is developing areas previously considered uninhabitable because of lack of access to transport systems.

 

Going ahead, Phase IV will grow the network further when it is completed in 2021, the system will be bigger than the London Underground and is expected to carry 6 million passengers daily.