Some months from now, you will be able to travel on a variety of modes of public transport – buses, local trains, the Metro – in select cities, using just one smart card.
The common mobility card, called the ‘One India Card’, that the urban development ministry is currently working on, will be introduced in Delhi, shortly before the Commonwealth Games start in October. After the trial run in Delhi, it will then be introduced to Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chandigarh.
With a single card – and without buying any ticket – a commuter will be able to access trains and buses in all these cities once transport operators computerise their fleet to make them compatible for use with smart cards.
It will be a multipurpose card, valid for all operators – government as well as private – and on all modes of local travel. It can be extended to taxis too at a later stage. In time, it will be possible to buy inter-city travel tickets and utility items as well using the card.
No long lines, early bookings, paying extra to ticket checkers on the train or travelling anxiety perhaps.
The overall objective of the project is to reduce individual car use in cities and tourist destinations which will lead to a reduction in energy consumption and traffic load. The aim is to improve the attractiveness of public transport and sustainable transport modes
Easy access to all kinds of sustainable transport with only one type of customer card
The concept comes from Europe. If you wish to know more you could go to the mobility card dot net site I linked above. In India, it is just on paper right now, expected to hit the market in Kolkata city in another two years or so? Perhaps.
How did this come about?
On October 19, 2009 Ministry of Urban Development Governement of India Metro Rail cell sent this circular to all chief secretaries. In it was said that “one of the bottlenecks in promotinguse of public transport is lack of seamless connectivity”. Since, the letter said, telescoping and combining fares is more difficult, integrating the ticket is what was suggested as feasible.