KOCHI / BENGALURU: Kochi got its first metro line today, while Bengaluru will add a line to the existing Namma Metro under Phase 1 of the mega project. Prime Minister Narendra Modi officially launched the Kochi Metro at 11 am today, while President Pranab Mukherjee is scheduled to inaugurate the new line of the Bengaluru Metro at around 7:30 pm. PM Modi took a ride on the Kochi Metro. He was joined by other dignitaries including Kerala Governor P Sathasivam, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu as well as E Sreedharan, popularly known as India's 'Metro Man'.
Here are 10 important points on this story:
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the first phase - 13.2 km of the total 25 km stretch - of the Kochi metro today around 11.00 am.
- The Prime Minister, along with other dignitaries, undertake a ride from the stations of Palarivattom to Pathadippalam in the city.
- With 11 stations covering nearly 13 km - from Palarivattom to Aluva - this is the longest first phase of a metro inaugurated.
- By road, it takes around 45 minutes to travel from Aluva to Palarivattom. The Metro will limit the travel time to 23 minutes.
- The Kochi Metro will be the first in India to use Communication Based Train Control technology to maximise frequencies and minimise errors.
- Each station will showcase a theme, such as maritime history, western ghats as well as the local history of the city, among others.
- Each station on the Kochi Metro will have solar panels, which will focus on producing 35 per cent of the total power usage.
- The Kochi Metro Rail Corporation has also decided to employ transgender people in stations.
- The construction of the Kochi Metro began in 2013 and was tasked to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation. The DMRC was once headed by Mr Sreedharan, who also acted as an advisor in the new project.
- According to the Kochi Metro website, the project cost an estimated 5,180 crore. The fare will vary from a minimum of Rs. 15 to a maximum of Rs. 30.