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Metro rail network across the country likely to cross 700 km within a few years: Puri

Metro rail network in the National Capital Region will span across 350 kilometres.

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Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri (C) at the inaugural session.
Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri (C) at the inaugural session.

India is expected to have around 700 kilometres of Metro rail network within the next few years, Union Housing and Urban Affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri said at the inaugural session of CoMET 2018 Management Meeting at Metro Bhawan in New Delhi, on Tuesday.

“Today 425 kilometres of Metro lines are operational in 10 cities. Metro projects in India are not only perceived as a solution to transportation requirements but as a means to transform cities. The Prime Minister as part of his vision is looking at a situation where 50 Indian cities will have Metro rails,” he said.

CoMET (Community of Metros) is a worldwide organisation of  Metro systems, and participants and experts from the Railway and Transport Strategy Centre, Imperial College, London are attending this annual meeting, hosted by Delhi Metro.

Describing Delhi Metro as the front-runner in India’s Metro rail story, Puri said that it was now operating on a network of 231 kilometres and ferrying three million people every day. He added that in a year’s time, the network would span across 350 kilometre in the National Capital Region, which would place Delhi Metro among the top five large Metro systems in the world.

The Metro Policy, announced last year would further propel the development of Metro in India. “Last year, the Metro Rail policy was announced. This policy enables greater private participation, innovative financing, value capital finance and provides more options of financing by the government for creation of Metro rail infrastructure. This will go a long way in further boosting the growth of Metro rail,” he noted.

“The phenomenal growth of the Metro sector in India has created safe, comfortable, affordable travel as well as mitigated pollution to a great extent but also provided an opportunity to global players for investment in the country. Many manufacturers including international brands have established manufacturing facilities and units here. The Government of India has a Make in India programme, in which indigenization has been a key ingredient in the contract conditions which we stipulate for procurement of Metro rail systems across the country due to which more and more international firms are looking at these prospects,” Puri said.

As part of the CoMET 2018 Management Meeting, Metro Rail experts from across the globe are deliberating on a range of issues with the objective of improving the quality of Metro services across cities.
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