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Why Delhi Metro’s longest line opening in March 2018 will run in two parts

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) is opening its longest line - 58.6km-long Mukundpur-Shiv Vihar corridor - next year but land has fallen short

delhi Updated: Sep 04, 2017 11:59 IST
Faizan Haidar
This Mukundpur-Shiv Vihar corridor will connect north and west Delhi with south and east Delhi. But about 4km is stuck over land acquisition and rehabilitation of affected people in east Delhi’s Trilokpuri.
This Mukundpur-Shiv Vihar corridor will connect north and west Delhi with south and east Delhi. But about 4km is stuck over land acquisition and rehabilitation of affected people in east Delhi’s Trilokpuri.

Direct metro connectivity between a major part of east Delhi with southern parts of the city has been delayed further because Delhi Metro’s longest line -- the 58.6km Mukundpur-Shiv Vihar corridor -- will operate in two segments as a small part of the line is stuck over land issues.

This line will connect north and west Delhi with south and east Delhi. But about 4km is stuck over land acquisition and rehabilitation of affected people in east Delhi’s Trilokpuri.

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has to rehabilitate 108 residents but is falling short of land. Only 66 families can be accommodated on the plot it has been alloted for the purpose.

It has requested the Delhi government for more land but the process will take time, which means construction on that 4-km stretch will not be over before the end of 2018.

“In Trilokpuri, we are not able to accommodate all these people on the piece of land given to us. This is because the available land for the dwellings has reduced as the road width had to be increased. We have asked for additional land from the Delhi Urban Shelter improvement Board (DUSIB), DMRC chief Mangu Singh said.

“We really do not know how much time it will take so we will leave that part. Trains coming from Mukundpur will be reversed from Mayur Vihar pocket 1 station while those operating from Shiv Vihar will return from IP extension . We are hopeful it will be resolved soon,” Singh said.

DMRC hopes to open rest of the portion by March 2018. But passengers from east Delhi areas such as Shiv Vihar, Welcome and Krishna Nagar will have to use Anand Vihar as an interchange to go to south Delhi or Gurgaon and Faridabad.

Once the entire line is complete, they can commute to Lajpat Nagar and INA directly, without going to RajIv Chowk.

The entire line was scheduled to be launched by December 2016. This stretch also provides crucial connectivity to the depot but DMRC will manage parking of trains by taking them all the way back to the origin stations.

The DUSIB had allotted a 11,138 square metre plot to DMRC in front of blocks 15, 16, 17 and 18 in Trilokpuri to relocate affected persons. But due to resistance from local residents, work could not begin at the plot on time.

The residents had moved court but the judgment went in favour of DMRC. Work in this section started in August, 2013. DMRC will take a year and a half to complete the relocation work. Construction of a viaduct at the affected portion will begin after the residents shift to their new accommodation.

“Construction of 108 houses for shifting affected persons of Trilokpuri block 15 started on October 13, 2016 as per the Delhi High Court’s direction. The DDA said the right of way in front of these quarters is 30 metres. But the width of the existing road is 21 metres. The DDA plans to develop Sanjay Lake and a commercial complex, which will increase traffic on this road. So the road will be widened by taking nine metres from the plot given to DMRC. So only 66 quarters can be constructed on the remaining land,” a DMRC official said.

For the remaining 42 residents, the DMRC has asked for a 2,615 square metre land in front of Block-14, Trilokpuri.

With 10 interchange stations, the line was set to take off load existing ones, especially Rajiv Chowk. “The line is constructed in a way that it will decongest all the other lines,” said a DMRC official.