14 rakes from China to be added for Kolkata Metro

Kolkata (KOAA): The Metro railways here will have 16 new rakes for modernisation of loco system and of those 14 will be imported from China.

Announcing the new projects Metro Railway, Kolkata, General Manager Radhey Shyam, who is also the GM of SER, today said 14 new rakes will be imported from China and two indigenously built rakes from Integral Coach Factory, Perambur, will be inducted in phase wise from 2016 onwards.

Due to increasing pressure and ever growing commuters, and demands for sophisticatedmode of transportation with full safety and comfort for passengers, the Metro Railway has chalked out a series of new projects.

Currently there are 27 rakes, 13 of them air-conditioned, ply daily and induction of 16 more rakesin phase wise with built-in double brakes system would enable Metro Railway to cope up with growing demands for quality services, Mr Shyam told reporters here.

Orders for new rakes have been placed recently, he added.

Besides this, the Mahanayak Uttam Kumar station, formerly known as Tollygunge station will have an additional station, which would help the authorities in originating and terminating trains in case the situation needed.

Though the Metro Railway has less in operating profit, still it has done better in 2014-15, earning Rs 171.77 crore from Rs 130.44 crore in 2013-14.  The operating ratio has dropped from 303 per cent to 253.69 per cent.  Metro has carried 18.31 crore passengers in 2014-15 and now plans to install new AC plants at Kalighat and Rabindra Sadan.

Dum Dum station will have two new lifts for passengers, he informed.

The underground stations will also have LED lamps for better illumination and conservationof energy, the GM added.

However, encroachment has been the biggest hurdle for expansion of Metro network and the authorities were not sure when all the projects, including East-West Metro, will be completed, Mr Shyam said.

The stretch between Noapara and Dakshineswar via Baranagar, has about 450 encroachments, beyond Noapara.

Though talks were on with the state government for removal of those encroachments but nothing tangible was made so far, barring Duttabad.

Noapara-Airport-Barasat link had to change the overhead alignment at the airport due to objection from the Defence authorities as the stations will be now underground.

For Joka depot in southern part of the city, Army has objected for which talks were in progress to settle amicably.

The GM said funds were not a problem now, only getting land and vacating encroachments had been major issues as the projects are to be completed on allocated money.

The metro here was built in 1984, which carries 5.

5 lakh to 600,000 passengers on daily basisbetween Kabi Subhash station in South 24 Parganas to Noapara in North 24 Parganascovering nearly 28 km across the city.