File picture of Metro running trial services during lockdown
KOLKATA: Senior government and Metro Railway officials are expected to meet at Nabanna on Monday to discuss the possibility of resuming services, with restrictions, from Wednesday. While Metro officials said they are prepared to run trains, the precautions that need to be taken will have to be worked out. Metro will seek assistance from the state for effective crowd management. The Metro isn’t designed to keep away passengers, a source said.
“We carry out routine checks and several equipment have been replaced or repaired. We have also held regular trials and running trains will not be a problem. However, effective crowd management will be a major challenge. These matters will certainly be discussed,” Metro Railway CPRO Indrani Banerjee said.
While the plan to resume Metro services was welcomed by some, others have cautioned that things could get out of hand unless strict control is maintained. According to health experts, caution has to be taken along the underground stretch where air gets circulated. Others said adhering to the ‘sitting only’ norm would be a problem.
“I wonder how the Metro will calculate how many people get off at a station to allow a similar number to board. If this is not perfect, there will be people standing. Sanitization of platforms and rakes on a regular basis may also be a problem,” said web designer Sharmila Roy, who used to be a regular Metro commuter before the lockdown. While some felt there won’t be too much crowd as educational institutions are closed and many offices are working at half capacity, others, like Tollygunge resident Oindrila Sen, said this is why there is no reason to rush.