BJP expresses concern over growing snags in Delhi metro and harassment of commuters

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BJP expresses concern over growing snags in Delhi metro and harassment of commuters
BJP expresses concern over growing snags in Delhi metro and harassment of commuters

 

The Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party President Shri Vijay Goel today expressed deep concern over the mishandling of Delhi Metro operation with an increasing number of snags, cracking of pillars and growing safety concerns. The commuters often feel harassed with metro trains halting quite often recently. It seems another major initiative taken by the BJP-led NDA government when it started Delhi Metro will lose its purpose if remedial steps are not taken immediately.

 

Addressing a press conference today Shri Goel said, “The Delhi government has a 50% stake in the DMRC. However there seems to be no action on part of the Delhi government to take corrective measures. The BJP demands a white paper on the present status of the metro with an action plan explaining the road map to resolve issues which may ground metro in the long run.”

 

“The BJP also demands to know what action has been taken to stop frequent halts of metro trains. Whose accountability has been fixed for cracks in pillars and frequent technical faults,” he asked.

 

It may be recalled that the physical construction work on the Delhi Metro started on October 1, 1998 during NDA regime and  thee first line of the Delhi Metro was inaugurated by Atal Behari Vajpayee, the then Prime Minister of India on December 24, 2002.

 

The DMRC was in fact set up in 1995 at the initiative of the then BJP government in Delhi. Today metro has become the lifeline of Delhi but with the expansion in its operation, the quality of metro services is a grave cause of concern.

 

Shri Goel said that cracks and faults in Delhi Metro pillars and other structures have been frequently reported.

 

The DMRC had earlier also rejected previous reports on major faults and cracks on the high-speed Airport Metro Express line in July 2012 and the sagging of Noida City Centre platform.

 

The cracks on pillars at Noida City Centre were not considered as serious initially. It was only on September 28, following media reports, that the DMRC admitted that there was deflection in one of the cantilever arms of the station that led to the sagging of its platforms.

 

The trouble-ridden high-speed airport service had to be stopped for six months from July 8, 2012 after the DMRC itself detected major faults on the line. It had initially categorized the problems as “minor”, according to an inquiry committee formed by Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD), holding DMRC responsible in its recent report.

 

Several cracks have appeared on some pillars of the Delhi Metro’s busiest line that carries 800,000 commuters a day between Dwarka and Noida, with experts calling for immediate repairs to avert a disaster.

 

Adding to the woes the DMRC is facing notice from a consortium of lenders with the Private promoter, Reliance Infrastructure moving out of Delhi Airport Metro Express Link project.

 

The lenders’ consortium, headed by Axis Bank, has sent recovery notices to both Reliance Infrastructure (promoter of the original concessionaire) and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (which is now operating the Airport Metro link).

Shri Goel said that an audit conducted by the Delhi government’s transport department, found that the security at the stations needs to be strengthened further.

 

Commuters enter the Metro stations with their luggage and can easily ply to the ticket counters without their baggage getting checked. The luggage is scanned only before the commuter goes towards the automatic fare collection gates. Threats loom large over the access points to the Metro stations and the unpaid area of the stations as there are no provisions to secure these areas.

 

Some recent incidents

 

October 25, 2013: Hundreds of commuters, including women and elderly, were stuck in a Dwarka-bound Metro train at the Yamuna Bank station for almost an hour following a major technical snag. The evening rush hour and a packed train added to their woes; women and children panicked and some elderly people fell sick because the air-conditioning had stopped working.

 

October 18, 2013: Thousands of commuters had a harrowing time as the DMRC shut the Noida City Centre metro station for eight hours for repair work. This was the second round of repair work being carried out on the pillar; the first was undertaken from October 12 to October 14.

 

September, 2013: the Noida City Centre metro station had to be shut down twice due to faults identified in its structure.

 

On 11 June, 2013:  An eight-compartment train carrying 1,791 passengers was stranded in mid section between Central Secretariat and Udyog Bhavan Metro station, as the emergency brake could not be released after being applied. Thousands of travellers, including women and children had a harrowing time after being stuck inside the train for over an hour.

 

Zamrudpur Accident: In 2009, eight people died during the construction of the Badarpur line.

 

Cracks and faults in Delhi Metro pillars and other structures have been frequently reported.

 

The DMRC had earlier also rejected previous reports on major faults and cracks on the high-speed Airport Metro Express line in July 2012 and the sagging of Noida City Centre platform.

 

The cracks on pillars at Noida City Centre were not considered as serious initially. It was only on September 28, following media reports, that the DMRC admitted that there was deflection in one of the cantilever arms of the station that led to the sagging of its platforms.

 

The trouble-ridden high-speed airport service had to be stopped for six months from July 8, 2012 after the DMRC itself detected major faults on the line. It had initially categorized the problems as “minor”, according to an inquiry committee formed by Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD), holding DMRC responsible in its recent report.

 

Several cracks have appeared on some pillars of the Delhi Metro’s busiest line that carries 800,000 commuters a day between Dwarka and Noida, with experts calling for immediate repairs to avert a disaster.

 

Faced with loan exposure to the Delhi Airport Metro Express Link project turning into a non-performing asset, a consortium of lenders has initiated steps for recovery of the dues.

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