New Delhi, Nov 21 (UNI) The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation plans a network of metros in the capital covering a length of 480 km, to be built in four phases, DMRC Managing Director E Shreedharan said today.
Delivering the eighth Anuvrat Endowment Lecture here this evening, Mr Shreedharan said plans were also afoot to increase the number of coaches in the metro trains on the operational phase one of the Delhi Metro from the present four to six and later on to eight coaches.
Stating that Metro was envisaged about a decade ago due to increasing congestion, pollution and rising accidents on the Delhi roads, Mr Shreedharan said it had proved to be a safe, reliable and fast mode of travel in the city.
''The rail-based transport system in the city was mooted for the city as road-based transport had led to increasing congestion, pollution and rise in number of deaths due to road accidents,''Mr Shreedharan said.
He said as against a target period of ten years set for building the phase one of the Metro, work on it was completed in just seven years and three months, he said.
Describing the phase one of the Delhi Metro as a huge success, the DMRC MD said the Metro trains in the city were currently ferrying six lakh passengers a day.
Also, the phase one of the Metro had led to a reduction of 20000 vehicles from the city roads, which in turn has translated into reduced pollution and congestion and a fall in the number of accidents.
In fact, a recent research by the Central Road Research Institute has reveled that 200 lives have been saved through the coming up of the Metro.
Also, the DMRC had been making an operational profit from day one.
''This is in spite of the fact that 60 per cent of the cost of building the Delhi Metro has come as a loan from Japan,''he said, adding the Metro had enough operational surplus to repay the entire loan.
''We will not need a special subsidy from the Government,'' he said.
Mr Shreedharan said a report by CRRI said the entire Rs 10500 crore, cost of building phase one of the Metro, would be recovered in terms of reduction in pollution and congestion.
The Phase two of the Metro will cover 122 km, including the high profile network to the Indira Gandhi International airport.
''We have a tight target for phase II - 122km of the rail line on the network has to be built before October 2010, before the commencement of the Commonwealth Games.
The DMRC MD said encouraged by the success of the Delhi Metro, many cities like Bangalore, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai were planning to operate Metro and had been getting enough assistance from the DMRC in ths regard.
He said the secret of the succes of the Delhi Metro lay in following the values of ''punctuality and cleanliness''.