Amidst the havoc of extended lockdown and growing COVID-19 cases in the country, the Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) floated tenders to select a financial institution for National Common Mobility Card (NCMC). The NCMC cardholders can use it to pay for metro, buses, toll and also for parking and purchases in retail stores as well.
As quoted by a national daily, Ajay Seth, Managing Director, BMRCL said that by the year-end, the required infrastructure will be in place to introduce the facility.
The metro corporation had started a trial by installing Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) system at Baiyappanahalli, Mysuru Road and Majestic stations. However, due to the lockdown implemented, the metro network is halted. The BMRCL, science 2011, has been issuing closed-loop smart cards for passengers to travel in the metro trains.
The metro corporation has completed the construction work for the phase II of the project with the extended metro lines connecting Kanakapura Road from Yelachenahalli to Anjanapura township and on Mysuru Road from Kengeri terminal. The new metro lines are expected to start operations for the public from the current year.
As per the tender documents, the selected financial institution shall strive for moving the existing smart cardholders to NCMC cards by offering improved services and loyalty programmes. However, keeping in mind the convenience of the customers, the metro corporation will continue to issue and accept closed-loop cards for transit ticketing, states the tender document.
The metro authority, in the tender document, clearly states that fee for the instant issuance of the NCMC card shall not exceed Rs 100. Also, there will not be a minimum balance limit or related charges on the NCMC issued from the metro corporation.
Moreover, the financial institution selected will be issuing the NCMC post approval from the BMRCL. In addition to this, the tender documents also state that commuters shall be able to check the balance in their cards via SMS, web-based channels, or mobile application.