Opposition BJP today demanded the Delhi government give a Rs 3,000 crore annual grant if it wanted the withdrawal of the proposed metro fare hike, and abstained from session that passed a resolution against the increase in the assembly. The House passed the government resolution to oppose the proposed metro fare hike, moved by Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot, with a voice vote. Leader of the Opposition Vijender Gupta claimed that rules stipulate that the state government must bear the full operational loses of the Metro Rail. "The Delhi government must provide an annual grant-in-aid of about Rs 3,000 crore if it wants the fare hike in Delhi Metro to put on hold," he said. He alleged that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was "misleading" people when he says that the Centre and the Delhi government are equal partners in Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), implying that both must bear equal operational loses. The demand of Rs 3,000 crore from the Delhi government, in case of withdrawing the fare hike, scheduled to come into effect from tomorrow, was raised by the Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Puri. Gupta also alleged that the Delhi government is creating "hurdles" in the smooth journey of the Delhi Metro. "The Phase-III of the Delhi Metro was planned to be completed by December 16, 2016.
But due to inaction of the Delhi government the work was delayed by over 15 months," he said. The BJP legislators also demanded that the Delhi government to reduce the 5 per cent VAT on petrol and diesel. The discussion on the proposed hike in metro fare got off to a rocky start in the Assembly with two BJP MLAs, who sought an apology from Kejriwal for allegedly using "foul language" in a recent debate on guest teachers, were marshalled out of the House.
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