Commuters facing problems with the QR ticketing system

Bengaluru BMRCL Tech

Say multiple attempts to scan them fail

Despite the growing popularity of QR tickets, most QR scanners at Namma Metro stations are not functioning.

According to a Hindu report, the QR-based ticketing system is being used by over 10,000 passengers for travelling on the Metro almost two weeks after its launch. BMRCL managing director Anjum Parwez said that in addition to QR ticket usage, more than 30,000 passengers are using the WhatsApp chatbot daily for various purposes.

Divya Prata, a student visiting Bengaluru the first time, shared her experience on the Metro with The Observer: “I had to travel from Indiranagar to Vidhana Soudha with my family for sightseeing. I bought a QR ticket on WhatsApp and tried to scan it at an entry gate. While attempting to scan it several times, it did not happen. I waited for 30 minutes until someone from the Metro came and manually scanned it. From then, I stopped purchasing QR tickets. It seems better to stand in a line and buy a physical token.”

S. Prem Kumar, a Metro employee at the Vidhana Soudha station, said: “Most of the scanners at the entrance and exit do not work sometimes. So we alerted our higher officials for a solution. If the scanner does not work, we ask the commuter to use the next entrance/exit gate’s scanners.”

G. Kalyani, a commuter who uses the Metro daily, said: “I still prefer buying tokens or recharging my Metro card. None of my friends has had a good experience with QR tickets. Online payments on the Namma Metro app are always a big task. I bought a QR ticket the first time it was introduced. The payment failed three times, and I had to repeat it until it was successful. It just seems like too much work.”

A. Verma, a Metro employee at the National College station, said: “Initially, we had a lot of complaints from commuters about the technical issue of the scanners. So, as a temporary solution, we scan the QR code using our phones and let them in from the gate. However, we do not have a permanent solution to this.” 

Srivas Rajagopalan, assistant to the chief PRO of BMRCL, said: “When we receive a complaint, we immediately deploy our staff to resolve the issue. However, we will need some time to create functional solutions for the QR code scanners. Underground Metro stations have different problems because of poor network connectivity. We cannot find a solution to that.

M.N. Sreehari, founder of the Indian Smart City Development Organization, informed The Observer: “People take time to adapt to new technologies. Such innovative projects are set up for people’s convenience, but they come with their cons. For example, we see how many people are stuck in a line at the entry and exit gates because one person in front is facing technical glitches. He should come out and give way for others while his problem is sorted out.”

Since November 1, travellers have been able to buy single-journey Metro tickets on their smartphones through the Namma Metro app or WhatsApp. Along with the option to purchase single-journey QR tickets and recharge Metro travel passes, BMRCL’s WhatsApp chat bot also offers a journey planner, customer feedback and WhatsApp payment options.

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