A part of the 58-km-long Pink Line of Delhi Metro was inaugurated here on Wednesday by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri and Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan.
The 21.56-km-long Majlis Park-Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus corridor of the Pink Line constitutes over a third of the entire 58-km stretch and it has 12 stations, including three interchange stations at Azadpur, Netaji Subhash Place and Rajouri Garden.
At the inaugural function, Kejriwal raised the issue of last year's Metro fare hike and said that it could have been avoided.
During his address, Puri conceded that the fares should not have been increased but added that the matter was "not in our hands".
"We did not have authority to influence it (fare hike)," he said.
Puri said that whenever the next Fare Fixation Committee (FFC) meeting would be held, the committee would consider his suggestion that the Metro fares should not be hiked for the next few years.
10 things to know about the new metro corridor
1. The new corridor, will also for the first time, connect the north and south campuses of the Delhi University, on the metro network, which can be commuted in 40 minutes.
2. With the opening of the 21.56 km-long section, the Delhi Metro's operational network will expand to nearly 252 km.
3. Passenger services on the stretch began at 6 pm today from both Majlis Park and Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus stations simultaneously. The end-to-end travel time on this section of the Pink Line is 34 minutes.
4. A boon for students
Students, until now, had to travel either by road from the North Campus or take the Airport Line metro till Dhaula Kuan and commute again on road.
The North Campus area of Delhi University already has a metro station -- Vishwavidyalaya, which falls on the Yellow Line that connects Samaypur Badli to Huda City Centre in Gurgaon.
The ticket from Vishwavidyalaya station to Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus station will cost Rs 50. And, from Majlis Park station to South Campus station, it will cost Rs 40. On Sundays and national holidays anyway, the fare is less than the regular cost.
5. Azadpur Station (with Yellow Line) is one of the three interchange stations on the Pink Line stretch that opens on March 14, the other two being, Netaji Subhash Place (with Red Line) and Rajouri Garden (Blue Line).
6. This section, which has 12 stations, is part of the 59 km-long Majlis Park Shiv Vihar corridor (Pink Line Line 7) of Delhi Metro's Phase 3. All the stations have platform-screen doors.
7. The stations are -- Majlis Park, Azadpur, Shalimar Bagh, Netaji Subhash Place, Shakurpur, Punjabi Bagh West, ESI Hospital, Rajouri Garden, Mayapuri, Naraina Vihar, Delhi Cantt and Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus.
8. Metro's new generation trains, which can run without drivers, will also run on this section where an advanced Communication Based Train Control (CBTC) signalling technology that will facilitate the movement of trains with a frequency of 90 to 100 seconds will also be pressed into service.
However, for an initial period of two-three years the trains will have drivers.
9. By the end of 2018, DMRC will be positioned among the top five Metro railways in the world with a 350-km long network.
The cost of construction per km of DMRC is much lower than that of Metro systems in Dhaka and Jakarta. It had achieved 85 to 90 per cent indigenisation in rolling stock.
Bombardier, Alstom and BEML were manufacturing coaches for DMRC at facilities based in the country.