Bengalureans go purple with Namma Metro

Bengalureans go purple with Namma Metro

Peak-hour rush at key stations of the Namma Metro’s East-West Corridor (Baiyappanahalli-Mysore Road) on Sunday led to long queues, sparing only the ‘Smart Card’ holders.

Curious commuters continued to throng South-India’s first underground metro station on the second day of the commercial operations, taking the number of riders to more than 1 lakh on Sunday. In just two days, the purple line saw almost 2.5 lakh footfalls, generating revenue of more than Rs 70 lakh. By 10 pm, more than 1.25 lakh people had tried the purple line metro.

The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) is expecting huge ridership on Monday, too, as Chinnaswamy Stadium will host the IPL match between the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Kolkata Knight Riders at 8 pm. The BMRCL will extend timings from 10 pm to 12 pm.

The flip side of the rush was that many commuters managed to get inside the metro stations without being frisked. Although, security personnel, including a number of home guards, were deployed in different stations, they could not match the crowd.

Long queue

Commuters who did not have smart cards were forced to wait in the queues that gradually grew long. Gajanana Hegde of Nagasandra was among the many who were trapped  in queues at Kempegowda metro station. “I am waiting for the tokens for the past 15 minutes, which is more than the travel time in the underground stretch. I will buy smart card next time,” he said.

Govinda Swamy and his son Praveen Kumar, who travelled from Vijayanagar to MG Road, were also stuck for more than 10 minutes. “It’s worth waiting in the long queues than getting stuck in the traffic. Travelling in the air-conditioned coaches is better than the bus,” he said with full of praise for Namma Metro. “I was looking forward to the metro. The infrastructure is not less than any other country,” he noted.

There were long queues at MG Road, Majestic, Cubbon Park, Mysore Road and Baiyappanahalli stations. But smart cards saved many. Lokesh D B, a HAL employee, was a happy man. “I bought a smart card on Saturday. It not only saves time from waiting at the ticket counters, but also has 15% fare and loaded trip discounts,” he said.

More feeder buses

Given the high demand for feeder buses in Bengaluru East, a BMRCL official said the BMTC has agreed to deploy feeder buses near Swami Vivekananda metro station. “Instead of Baiyappanahalli, SV Road was chosen due to the availability of spacious bus bay. This is going to help many to switch over to public transport such as metro and BMTC. This was the demand of techies who work in the nearby localities. Metro bikes will also be operational in a week,” he said. 

Service extended for IPL match

On account of the IPL match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders to be played at Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Monday, the BMRCL will extend metro operations on both stretches (Purple and Green lines) up to 12.30 am on Tuesday.

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