Graded opening of metro services from September 7; Govt issues SOP

New Delhi | Updated on September 02, 2020 Published on September 02, 2020

Frequency to be regulated; use of smart cards and cashless transactions will be encouraged

Metro services in most major cities, barring Mumbai, will commence in a graded manner from September 7 and become fully operational by September 12 but with ample precautions, according to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) guidelines issued by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs on Wednesday.

“Metros having more than one line should open different lines starting from September 7 onwards in a graded manner so that all corridors become operational by September 12. Daily hours of operations may be staggered initially, which needs to be increased gradually with resumption of full revenue service by September 12,” said Hardeep Puri, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Housing and Urban Affairs.

The frequency of metros will be regulated to avoid passenger crowding at stations and in trains. The entry/exit gates of stations in containment zones will remain closed, he added.

Social distancing, masks

The guidelines further mention that in order to ensure social distancing, suitable markings at stations and inside trains is to be done. Besides this, wearing face mask will be mandatory for all passengers and staff.

Metro rail corporations may plan for supply of masks on payment basis to the persons arriving without mask.

“Use of smart cards and cashless/online transactions to be encouraged. Tokens and paper slips/tickets to be used with proper sanitisation,” said Puri.

Provision for sanitisers to be made at the entry into the stations for use by passengers. Sanitisation of all areas having human interface such as equipment, train, working area, lift, escalators, handrail, toilets etc. needs to be done at regular intervals, he added.

According to the guidelines, only asymptomatic persons will be allowed to travel after thermal screening at the entry into the stations. Symptomatic persons should be advised to go to nearby Covid Care Centre/Hospital for testing/medical attention and use of Aarogya Setu App by passengers will be encouraged.

The guidelines added that metro rail corporations will have to keep close liaison with state police and local administration for regulating crowd outside stations and to deal with contingencies.

“Based on the above guidelines, Delhi, Noida, Chennai, Kochi, Bengaluru, Mumbai Line-1, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Maha Metro (Nagpur) Kolkata, Gujarat and UP Metro (Lucknow) have prepared their SOPs,” said Puri.

The Maharashtra Government has decided not to resume operation of the metro this month. Hence, Mumbai Line-1 and Maha Metro operations will commence from October, or as State Government may decide further, he added.

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Published on September 02, 2020
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