Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday flagged off India's first-ever driverless train operations on Delhi Metro's Magenta Line, along with the fully operational National Common Mobility Card service on the Airport Express Line. The inauguration was held via video conferencing. The commercial operation of these new-generation trains, set to be a major technological feat, began after the event.
The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said on Saturday that these innovations will herald a new era of travelling comfort and enhanced mobility.
The driverless trains will be fully automated, which will eliminate the possibility of human error, it said, adding that after the start of driverless services on the Magenta Line (Janakpuri West-Botanical Garden), the Pink Line (Majlis Park-Shiv Vihar) of Delhi Metro is expected to have driverless operations by mid-2021.
The National Common Mobility Card, which will be fully operationalised on the Airport Express Line, will enable anyone carrying a RuPay-Debit Card issued from any part of the country to travel on the route using it. This facility will become available on the entire Delhi Metro network by 2022, the PMO said.
Prime Minister Modi in March 2019 had launched the indigenously-developed NCMC to enable people to pay multiple kinds of transport charges, including using Metro and bus services across the country.
Dubbed as 'One Nation One Card', the inter-operable transport card allows the holders to also pay for their bus travel, toll taxes, parking charges, retail shopping and even withdraw money.
This is the first major event of Delhi Metro in 2020 which saw an unprecedented lockdown in the earlier months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Delhi Metro had resumed services with curtailed operation on the Yellow Line from September 7 after being closed for over five months.