Metro's lifeline tag in dangerMetro's lifeline tag in danger

Passengers complain they have to wait longer for trains during peak hours

Glitches in the operations of Delhi Metro are not helping it maintain its ‘lifeline of the city’ tag.

The current frequency of Metro trains has decreased at some points, especially after 8 or 9 pm. Some passengers complain that even at peak hours between 5 and 6 pm, the Metro slows down – and intervals between two trains increase to seven or eight minutes.

“The metro stops moving and stands still for about eight to 10 minutes at some stations or while approaching some of the busy stations like Rajiv Chowk,” says traveller Shraddha Gupta.

But a Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) official says: “Delhi Metro is maintaining maximum frequency, like two-and-a-half to four minutes at peak hours and five to 15 minutes during non-peak hours,which includes early morning and late night hours. No changes have been done on train frequency in recent past.”

People who own cars and two-wheelers too have a grouse. They complain of being denied parking facilities at several Metro stations.

“I recently bought a car and decided to travel by Metro to our workplace. When we approached the parking manager at Tagore Garden Metro station, he said they do not have space. I am left with no option but to travel by car and complain about the traffic every day,” says Satish Kumar, a businessman.

However, a DMRC official says the parking facility is available at many stations and details are available on the Metro website. “However, all passengers get parking space as per the availability of space.” Passengers have also complained about   feeder buses, which take Metro passengers from the station to places closer to their homes.

“In Dwarka, the feeder bus frequency is random and after 6 pm we do not see a single feeder bus. Most families who travel via Metro take rickshaws that charge Rs 20-30, which is expensive,” says Brijesh Mishra, a resident of Dwarka sector 21.

At present, 117 feeder buses ply on 16 different routes every 10 to 15 minutes. Metro stations that provide bus service include Shastri Park, Netaji Subhash Place, Pitampura, Rohini West, Kirti Nagar, Rajendra Place, Dwarka sector 9 & 10, Laxmi Nagar and Tilak Nagar.

Apart from Delhi Metro, feeder buses are also run by Haryana Roadways at different stations on the Jahangirpuri-Huda City Centre line. Delhi Transport Corporation and Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation too run shuttle services at some stations. But passengers passengers complain that even the state-run buses are not frequent, and are in a deplorable condition.

“DMRC is in the process of inducting 300 more feeder buses in the next six months,” says an official. These buses will operate on 72 state transport authority-approved routes. They will originate from 46 Metro stations, and cover 60 stations. They were supposed to be inducted by April but missed the deadline.

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