Eager as it is to put behind it the unpleasant moments that marred its reputation in the year just gone by, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation is going full steam ahead for early completion of its upcoming new lines in the New Year.

Unlike its earlier practice of beating its own deadlines, the DMRC in the past year had to contend with challenges posed by delayed openings on account of tragic mishaps and a slow turn-out of new trains.

In 2010, the DMRC is aiming to change all that with an early opening of a new stretch along the upcoming Central Secretariat-Gurgaon line. Sources told The Hindu on Friday that though the scheduled date for the opening of the corridor is March 2010, the DMRC is contemplating a February opening for the Arjangarh-Haryana Urban Development Authority City Centre stretch.

“The civil work is over and the Corporation is in a position to start trial runs any time now. If the trial runs are carried out through January and the certification from the Commissioner of Metro Rail Safety is obtained, there is a fair chance that the line will be opened in February itself,” said sources.

Referring to availability of new trains required for the section, sources said: “The opening of the new Yamuna Bank-Anand Vihar section was partly delayed because of the unavailability of trains. But the situation is now easing up. We are getting new trains as per our requirements and tests on theses new trains are being carried out. These tests are to rule out any glitch or technical fault.” Trial runs along the Arjangarh-HUDA City Centre are expected to start this month. The stretch is part of the Central Secretariat-HUDA City Centre line that covers Race Course, Jor Bagh, AIIMS, Green Park, Malviya Nagar and Saket going further up to Qutub Minar, Chhattarpur, Sultanpur, Ghitorni and Arjangarh.

“The entire line is expected to attract very heavy footfalls as it covers a vast section of Delhi and goes up all the way into Haryana. The expected ridership for the line is 1.8 lakh commuters by 2011,” said sources.

The 12.53-km stretch between Central Secretariat and Qutub Minar in Delhi is underground, while the 14.47-km Qutub Minar-Gurgaon stretch jutting into Haryana is elevated.

The scheduled opening of the Central Secretariat-Qutub Minar section is some time in July 2010, and for the Qutub Minar-Gurgaon section it is March 2010. The DMRC meanwhile is also gearing for the opening of the new Yamuna Bank-Anand Vihar line in Delhi early next week. This will be followed by the Inderlok-Mundka section.

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