Some relief for intra-state commuters! Delhi Metro and other metro rail networks across the country will be allowed to open under Unlock 4.0 with effect from September 7. “Metro rail will be allowed to operate with effect from September 7 in a graded manner, by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MOHUA)/ Ministry of Railways (MOR), in consultation with MHA,” the latest Government of India notification reads. Delhi Metro and other metro rail networks have already indicated their readiness to resume metro rail operations with the necessary guidelines to avoid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The DMRC is taking many steps to ensure that commuters follow social distancing norms while travelling. Recently, a new facility has been introduced that will allow Delhi Metro users to get their smart cards auto-topped up at AFC gates. This new type of smart can is available on ‘Autope’ app, which has been specially developed for this purpose. Also, commuters with the old smart cards can avail to this facility by upgrading their smart cards. Moreover, large stickers have been pasted by DMRC bearing the message of ‘Ensure Social Distancing’, at regular intervals on seats and platform floors. DMRC is also likely to use thermal scanners to screen Delhi Metro commuters.
DMRC has also done the much-needed cleaning inside the metro trains, indoor station areas like entrance lobbies, corridors, security areas, elevators, escalators, staircases, etc. Recently, it was reported that to ensure compliance with the government’s COVID-19 safety norms, the number of entry points to DMRC metro stations will be curtailed, after the resumption of services. There are 10 Delhi Metro lines spanning a total of 242 metro stations with 671 entry points. However, only 257 number of gates and frisking sides are likely to be opened to comply with COVID-19 safety norms.