New Delhi: A crucial link to the main Commonwealth Games venue of Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, the Central Secretariat-Sarita Vihar corridor on Sunday rolled out to
the public just hours before the inauguration of the sporting extravaganza.
The 15-km corridor, which will facilitate the travel of people attending the opening ceremony of the Games, was inaugurated with much fanfare, though DMRC Managing Director E Sreedharan was present at the Central Secretariat station.
A brand-new Standard Gauge train began its journey from the Central Secretariat station at 8 am after it was flagged off by the station master in the presence of Sreedharan.
The line is part of the Central Secretariat-Badarpur corridor, whose deadline was September 30. But, the DMRC decided to throw it open till Sarita Vihar only as some
signalling work is pending on the small stretch from Sarita Vihar to Badarpur.
With this, the Delhi Metro`s ambitious Phase-II has almost been completed except the Airport Express Line, which could not get the safety clearance.
"It is a matter of great pride and glory for all of us in Delhi Metro that the Badarpur line has been substantially opened up to Sarita Vihar. This marks almost the completion of
our Phase-II project," an elated Sreedharan told reporters at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
He recalled that the line was sanctioned only in 2007 and it has been completed within just 3 years and 4 months.
Since the line connects the JLN Stadium, Delhi Metro will runs 29 trains on it till the end of the Games at an all- time high frequency 2.40 minutes.
DMRC spokesperson Anuj Dayal told a news agency that Sreedharan himself will monitor train movement on the line today from the Operation Control Centre at Metro Bhawan.
"Since it is the opening ceremony, he will be there at the OCC the whole day and monitor the train movement. Senior officials and experts from South Korea and Germany have also been stationed at various places to ensure no technical glitch takes place today," he said.
This is the second Standard Gauge line to come up in the country after the Delhi Metro`s Inderlok-Mundka corridor.
Work on the line was delayed after an under-construction pillar collapsed in Zamrudpur in south Delhi last July killing seven people.
Immediately after the line opened, a number of people, especially Games volunteers, took the Metro to reach the Games venue.
The JLN Stadium station wore a festive look and Sreedharan visited it along with his wife and senior DMRC officials.
At the Central Secretariat station, Sreedharan and other officials took part in a `havan` before taking a ride on the train.
The line is expected to be further extended up to Badarpur from Sarita Vihar in about 10 days time.
With its inauguration, the total operational Metro network expands to 153 kilometres with 130 Metro stations and the travel time from Central Secretariat to Sarita Vihar will
be approximately 26 minutes.
Central Secretariat has now become one of the biggest interchange Metro stations with both Standard and Broad gauge lines merging here.