NEW DELHI: Addressing the inaugural session of the COMET 2018 management meeting, HardeepPuri, MoS(I/C) Housing and Urban Affairs acknowledged the effort of Communities of Metros, i.e. the COMET in bringing together Metro professionals from all over the world and providing opportunity for mutual sharing of knowledge and ideas for improvement in the performance of the Metro rail sector globally. DurgaShankerMishra, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs,Mangu Singh, MD, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation and representatives from the Railway and Transport Strategy Centre (RTSC), Imperial College London were also at the meeting.
Observing that holding of this meeting in India has a significant relevance to the metro rail in India as the country has undergone a metro rail revolution in the last decade, the minister informed that from a humblebeginning of just 8 km in 2002, 425kmof metro lines are operational as of now in 10 different cities across the country. With many cities planning for metro rail and in next few years, the network length of the Metro in India is expected to cross 700 km. In addition to this, regional rail transit systems are also being planned to unclog the cities, the minister said
He informed that with a view to systematically augment the metro rail transport in India, the government has issued the Metro Rail Policy last year. The policy enables greater private participation, innovative financing, and value capture finance and provides more options of financing by the government for creation of metro rail infrastructure. This policy will go a long way in further boosting the growth of metro rail.
He said that the forerunner of India’s metro rail success has undoubtedly been Delhi Metro with an operational network of 231 kilometres and carrying three million people every day. He expressed confidence that within a year the network length in India’s National Capital Region will cross the 350 Kmand will place Delhi among the first five cities having the largest metros in the world. The success of the Delhi Metro has shown the other cities in India that such large projects can be efficiently executed and operated here.
He emphasized on the need of devising technologies that will help in constructing and operating Metro systems in the sustainable manner and urged the participants to take with them valuable inputs from the conference which will help them provide better services to the passengers.
COMET is the world’s metro benchmarking group which is comprehensive programme of international urban railway benchmarking providing confidential forum for metros to share experiences, compare performance, identify best practices, and learn from one another for member organizations to improve performance.The community has continued for 20 years because participants have realized significant benefits in reducing costs, increasing revenues, and improving safety, reliability, and quality.Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has been elevated to COMET group of metros from Jan, 2015.