Kolkata’s metro system gears up for a historic expansion across the Ganges, the Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited (KMRCL) is leaving no stone unturned to ensure passenger safety and timely completion. In this comprehensive article, we delve into the intricacies of this groundbreaking project, the challenges it faces, and the safety measures being implemented.
Progress and Challenges
The Countdown Begins
Kolkata Metro With the goal of commencing operations by next December, KMRCL has set an ambitious target. However, as of now, only 70 percent of the project has been completed, leaving the remaining 30 percent to be a subject of uncertainty.
Will the project be completed by December?
Kolkata Metro This question looms large, not just in the minds of KMRCL officials but also among the city’s eager commuters. Amidst this, Metro PR officials reassure the public of their preparedness.
Managing Director’s Assurance
Kolkata Metro VK Srivastava, the Managing Director of KMRCL, shares an optimistic outlook. “Metro work from Howrah Maidan to Esplanade is almost complete,” he states confidently, adding that last-minute tasks are in progress. He further mentions, “We expect all the work to be completed by December 23.” If his words hold true, it means a delightful gift for the city just before the new year, allowing commuters to travel seamlessly from Howrah to Dharmatala via the metro.
Kolkata Metro While the managing director’s words paint a promising picture, some within the metro administration express reservations. According to inside sources, significant work is still pending at Mahakaran, Esplanade, and Howrah Maidan stations. Railway safety officials are closely monitoring the situation, with a particular focus on fire safety and other critical aspects.
Earthquake Resistance and Passenger Safety
KMRCL is adamant about not taking any chances with the first metro line under the Ganges. They are diligently fortifying the system’s earthquake resistance capabilities. The meticulous scrutiny extends to Passenger Safety Rules, ensuring every parameter is scrupulously followed.
International Safety Audit
Kolkata Metro In a move to bolster confidence, the safety regulations document is scheduled to undergo an International Safety Audit in late October or early November. The green signal for the metro’s launch will hinge on the outcomes of this meticulous testing.
Jadavpur University’s Perspective
Partha Pratim Biswas, a Professor of the Construction and Engineering Department at Jadavpur University, offers his expert insights. According to him, the tunnel is still in its trial stage, and it’s imperative to verify whether it can safely accommodate the anticipated train loads at full speed.
Two Trains, One Challenge
At the outset, the service will commence with two trains, a slightly better condition than the existing Joka Taratala Metro. These two trains will operate alternately between Howrah Maidan and Esplanade through both east and west tunnels. However, a crucial factor to note is the absence of a crossover point for changing trains towards Sealdah after reaching Esplanade. A crossover is available at the entrance to Howrah Maidan. Given this setup, trains will inevitably return via the same line they arrived on, causing significant crowds.
As Kolkata eagerly anticipates the metro’s expansion across the Ganges, the spotlight remains firmly on safety. KMRCL’s unwavering commitment to earthquake resistance and adherence to passenger safety rules instill confidence in the project’s viability. With expert insights and rigorous testing on the horizon, the city remains poised for a transformative addition to its public transportation network. The success of this endeavor hinges on meticulous planning and rigorous safety protocols, ensuring the metro’s journey under the Ganges is both historic and secure.
1. When will the metro service across the Ganges begin?
The metro service is slated to commence by next December, with 70 percent of the project already completed.
2. What safety measures are being implemented for the Ganga crossing?
KMRCL is strengthening the metro’s earthquake resistance system and meticulously following Passenger Safety Rules to ensure a safe journey.
3. What role does Jadavpur University play in this project?
Jadavpur University’s experts are assessing the tunnel’s safety during the trial stage to guarantee passenger security.
4. How will the initial phase of the metro operation unfold?
The initial phase will feature two trains operating alternately between Howrah Maidan and Esplanade, with a return journey through the same line due to the absence of crossovers.
5. What challenges does the metro anticipate with its new operational plan?
The primary challenge lies in managing the expected crowd during the return journey due to the lack of crossovers, especially after reaching Esplanade.