Nearly 2,000 people die in road accidents in Delhi every year. So at a time, when the rising number of vehicles are causing more accidents on roads, the Capital's most preferred mode of public transport has done its bit to bring them down.
Delhi Metro's former chief E Sreedharan said that the Metro service has been saving 180 to 185 lives annually from road deaths. Sreedharan was referring to the findings of a recent study conducted by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) with the help of Central Road Research Institute (CRRI).
"There would have been nearly 185 deaths more on city roads annually if there had been no Delhi Metro," said the former DMRC chief. He was speaking to HT at the sideline of the SR Jindal Prize 2012, organised by the SJ Foundation here on Monday.
The CRRI director S Gangopadhyay was, however, not available for comment.
Sreedharan also said that the Delhi Metro carries a total of 22 lakh people daily, which is equivalent to over one lakh vehicles being taken off the city roads. The DMRC, however, said that as per the study 1.59 lakh vehicles went off the roads due to the network. The study also said that more than a lakh vehicles will also stop plying once DMRC's third phase expansion is completed.
"Without the Metro, the number of vehicles and consequent accidents would have been much higher. At the same time, despite a rise in the train network, the number of vehicles on Delhi roads has continuously increased," said Satyendra Garg, joint commissioner of police (traffic).
"The issue of last mile connectivity still remains. If addressed, Delhi will see a decline in private vehicles, which will facilitate better traffic management," he added.