Union Minister of State, Hardeep Singh Puri for Housing and Urban Affairs on March 6 addressed the inaugural session of CoMET 2018 Management Meeting at Metro Bhawan and said, "India was moving towards a Metro network of more than 700 kilometres within the next few years and that the government had the vision to have Metro systems in 50 cities in the country in the days to come."
"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 added.
CoMET (Community of Metros), is a worldwide organisation of Metro systems. Participants from all these Metros along with experts from the Railway and Transport Strategy Centre, Imperial College, London are attending this annual meeting, hosted by the Delhi Metro this year.
Describing the Delhi Metro as the forerunner of India's Metro story, Puri said that it was now operating on a network of 231 kilometres and carrying three million people every day and in a year's time, the network length in the nation's Capital Region was going to cross 350 kilometres which would place Delhi Metro among the top five large Metro systems in the world.
The Minster also added that 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 for 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 said.
"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 indigenisation 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," he added.
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 further improving the quality of Metro services across cities. Chairman, DMRC and Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs D.S Mishra and Managing Director, DMRC Mangu Singh were also present on the occasion.