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March 15 to be ‘Red-Letter Day’ for Indian Railways as Metro train to run through tunnel under Hooghly

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Kolkata, March 9: The wait is finally over. Come March 15, Indian Railways’ first underwater commercial service will commence between the twin cities of Kolkata and Howrah. Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Esplanade-Howrah Maidan (Green Line) Metro Railway link on March 6.

Metro Railway, Kolkata has now decided to start running commercial services along this stretch from March 15.

Several lakhs of people are waiting with bated breath for commercial services to begin, so that they get an opportunity to travel through the tunnel under Hooghly river.

This is not only India’s first underwater Metro link, it is also the country’s first ever underwater rail link.

Metro Railway, which ran India’s first Metro service in Kolkata, will be operating 130 services between Esplanade and Howrah Maidan.

Services will be available every 12-15 minutes depending upon the time of day.

Services will begin at 7 a.m. and the last trains will leave both Esplanade and Howrah Maidan stations at 9.45 p.m., Metro Railway general manager P. Uday Kumar Reddy announced on Saturday.

While those with valid smart cards for the North-South Metro will be able to use them along this stretch, other commuters will also be able to access any Metro stretch with a single smart token.

“If somebody wishes to reach the Ruby Crossing (Hemanta Mukhopadhyay station) on the Eastern Metropolitan Bypass from Howrah Maidan, s/he will just need to purchase one smart token though two changeovers will have to be made – one at Esplanade and the other at Kavi Subhas. There will be no requirement to get off a train and queue up at a counter for another token. The ride will be seamless for smart card holders,” a Metro Railway spokesperson said.

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister had also inaugurated the Kavi Subhas-Hemanta Mukhopadhyay stretch of the Orange Line and the Joka to Majerhat link of the Purple Line.

These will also become operational from Friday (March 15).

IANS

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