Some Metro commuters could face jail, heavy fines


Riding in an intoxicated state, creating a scene or using abusive language inside the premises of a Metro network could lead to rs. 5,000 fine, according to sweeping changes proposed in the law to govern mass rapid-transit systems in India.

The Union housing and urban development ministry has sent the draft Metro Rail (Construction, Operation and Maintenance) Bill, 2017 to the law ministry for vetting, and it contains clauses that will overhaul not only rules and regulations for passengers but the way Metro projects are built and fares revised.

The bill also proposes stiff fines for staffers, who could be fined rs. 10,000 for general offences and rs. 30,000 and jail term of up to two years if their actions endangers passengers.

It has suggested a permanent authority be set up to revise metro fares whenever required, an issue that was at the centre of the controversy sparked by a steep increase in Delhi Metro fares that for long went without a hike.

“Metro is a distinct system from the rail system and with networks expanding, a host of issues related to safety, operations and maintenance have come up, which were not addressed in the current law,” said M Ramachandran, former urban development secretary, who welcomed the proposed bill.

Once cleared by the law ministry, the bill will go to the cabinet for approval before being tabled in Parliament. The current law, which covers 8 metro projects across India, came up in 2002 and was amended in 2009.


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