During the year 2021, Kolkata Metro has witnessed unprecedented growth in the development of infrastructure and capacity expansion of its network. Despite Covid challenges, Kolkata Metro continued to lay the foundation for future development and the next level of traveling experience for commuters.
Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the extended stretch of North-South Metro from Noapara to Dakshineswar (4.1 Km length) on 22.02.2021 & flagged off the first Metro on this stretch. In his speech, Prime Minister said, “This extension would not only help the people of Kolkata but also of Hooghly, Howrah, and North 24 Paraganas to get the benefit of Metro services”.
Non-Interlocking (NI) work of the Noapara car shed was successfully completed during the year. This NI work involved modification of the Electronic Interlocking System at Noapara which is linked to all routes, points, signals & track sections in the car shed. This modification has greatly improved the operational flexibilities of movement of rakes to and from Noapara and thereby increased performance parameters of train running of Metro Railway.
The first trial run from Phoolbagan to Sealdah of East-West Metro was successfully completed this year. Sealdah station of this corridor is all set to be commissioned very soon.
A 1.24 MWp rooftop Solar Power Plant has been dedicated to the service of the Nation on 27.08.2021. This Power Plant has been installed on the roofs of the two major buildings of Central Park Depot of East-West Metro and is scattered over 19173 sq mtr rooftop area. As a result, Metro Railway will be able to save Rs.45 lakhs (approx) per annum.
Two elevators at Mahanayak Uttam Kumar Metro station were dedicated to the service of the Nation on 02.10.2021 on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti. These two lifts have fulfilled the long-standing demand of Metro commuters and provided additional passenger amenities in this station.
An exhibition on wheels, the first of its kind in any Metro Railway of the country was organized inside a Non-AC Metro rake (Rake no-N 12/14, the last Non-AC rake of Kolkata Metro) on 24.10.2021, Metro Railway’s 37th Foundation Day at Mahanayak Uttam Kumar station. In this exhibition, the glorious past of Kolkata Metro, the country’s first Metro, present scenario, and its future projects were showcased through colorful posters. After the exhibition, Metro Railway gave a befitting farewell to its fleet of Non-AC rakes. The Non-AC rakes of Kolkata Metro have become a thing of the past. Metro Railway has now been providing full ac services to the commuters.
Tokens have been re-introduced in Metro Railway on 25.11.2021 for the benefit of the commuters. Tokens were last issued on 23.03.2020. In order to sanitize these tokens, 40 token sanitizer machines have been installed at all North-South and East-West Metro stations. These machines with the help of Ultra-Violet rays sanitize the used tokens for 4 minutes.
A Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) Oxygen Generator Plant was inaugurated by Shri Manoj Joshi, General Manager on 01.12.2021 at Tapan Sinha Memorial Hospital. This Plant has the capacity to produce 250 liters of oxygen per minute for the benefit of the patients. It will also help to reduce the expenditure of purchasing bulk oxygen cylinders by at least 70 percent.
As part of celebrating Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, QR Code Based Ticketing System has been introduced in East-West Metro from 04.12.2021 fulfilling the long-standing demand of Metro commuters. With the introduction of this third alternative system, Metro tickets are now available at the fingertips of commuters. Metro Railway is also now working to extend this facility on the North-South corridor in a few months’ time after providing QR Code scanners and upgrading hardware of existing AFC gates in stations of the North-South corridor.
Tapan Sinha Memorial Hospital of Metro Railway has been treating Covid patients since last year. A 75-bed separate Covid ward has been opened for the treatment of Covid patients here. Till 30.12.2021 604 Covid patients have been treated in this ward which is equipped with all modern facilities for treatment. Covid vaccination drive started in Metro Railway from 02.02.2021. Till 30.12.2021 a total of 21,423 doses of the Covid vaccine (1st & 2nd dose) have been jabbed to Health Care Workers, Metro Staff, Railway Beneficiaries, Contractual Staff, and General Public.
Metro Railway has offered 7 Metro stations for station branding rights to corporate houses including private Universities, Banks, Health Care Institutions, Insurance Companies, etc. 5 stations of North-South Metro namely Dumdum, Noapara, Belgachia, Esplanade, and Park Street and 2 stations of East-West Metro namely Bengal Chemical & Sealdah (which will be operational very shortly) have been offered for station branding rights in this tender. Metro has earned Rs 3.65 crore in the first year by offering the station branding rights of these stations. Metro Smart Cards have also been branded by two private concerns. For this Metro has so far earned Rs 20.65 lacs. So far, 11 Metro stations have been co-branded.
Branding of AFC-PC gates of North-South Corridor has also successfully been completed for a period of 2 yrs. A total of Rs 73.50 lacs have been earned by offering the branding rights of 350 gates of the stations.
Apart from this, 52 Card Balance Checking Terminals (CBCT) of all the 26 North-South Metro stations have also been branded which has helped Metro Railway to earn Rs 12.48 lacs.
As per the agreement with a private concern, Power Bank Rental Towers have been installed at 24 Metro stations from Noapara to Kavi Subhas. Metro has been able to earn Rs 12 lacs for 1yr.