Maharashtra: Metro’s convenient e-bikes attracting commuters

Maharashtra: Metro’s convenient e-bikes attracting commuters

NAGPUR: Electric bikes, a pilot experiment kickstarted by MahaMetro around eight months back, is catching people’s interest, with a revenue of Rs 2.26 lakh being generated from it till date.

After signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with private firm KHS Associates, MahaMetro launched the environment-friendly vehicles in the city in November last year. According to officials, a total of 638 rides have been completed on e-scooters, with over a 1,000 people downloading the mobile application.

As per the MoU, the e-bike operator has provided bikes at different locations for commuters. “The bike comes under the category of non-motorized transport and thus users don’t need the mandatory licence,” said officials.

Usage of e-bikes is completely app-based – citizens have to download the app and upload details of their Aadhar card and electricity bill. “The application has different fare systems on hourly as well as weekly basis. The average cost is Rs 1 per minute. Once the booking is confirmed through the application, commuters can directly go to the e-scooter hub and unlock the vehicle by scanning a code from their mobile phones,” officials said.

At present, there are two e-bikes each at the airport, Ajni, Khapri, Sitabuldi, Lokmanya Nagar, Wadi, W building (Mihan), Manish Nagar, CRPF and other hubs. In all, 22 e-scooters are available in the city.

“We got a great response from the airport station where tourists staying in hotels as well as citizens have been booking e-bikes for hours and even a week. The bikes are also in much demand at CRPF, Sitabuldi and some other stations,” said officials.

TOI has learnt that the city is expected to get more e-scooters at Jhansi Rani Square, Wasudev Nagar, Chhatrapati Square and other areas. “We are also looking forward to starting e-bikes hubs in areas where the demand is more, especially near offices,” an official told TOI.

The cost of one e-bike is around Rs 72,000. “Right now, MahaMetro is focusing on bringing last-mile connectivity to riders at affordable prices rather than commercial profits. We are very happy with the response and hope that the usage will increase when restrictions start opening up,” the official added.

In a release on Saturday, MahaMetro stated that it is now cheaper to travel by Metro instead of a two-wheeler. “Metro is charging only Rs 10 for travelling over 10 kilometres. We appeal to the citizens to use Maha Card, the common mobility card, in greater numbers. You don’t need to carry cash for buying tickets as you can use this card. It is available at Metro stations and can be charged there or via online mode. In case of any confusion, contact the Maha Metro staff at stations,” said MahaMetro managing director Brijesh Dixit.

To encourage citizens to use the card, MahaMetro is providing a discount of 10% on every ride.

News source- Economic Times

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