Samit Basu works for an MNC in Gurgaon and spends nearly two hours every day commuting from his Mayur Vihar residence to work. But standing in front of the just opened Yamuna Bank metro station on Sunday Basu could already see his life change in a matter of three months.
By extending the Dwarka-Indraprastha metro section just by 2.1 km and making the Yamuna Bank station operational, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) not only achieved a milestone on Sunday but also a peek into future to the nearly 40 lakh people commuting from East Delhi every day.
“Once the metro extends up to Mayur Vihar and the Central Secretariat line extends up to Gurgaon, I won't have to take my office cab anymore,” he said. Basu had come to see the station on Sunday and take a ride on the Metro for the first time.
The Yamuna Bank section was scheduled to open five months from now, along with the Indraprastha-Noida corridor but has been opened ahead of schedule to provide some early relief to commuters.
This station is going to be an important interchange station, as the Anand Vihar ISBT Corridor and the Noida corridor will diverge from this point.Though the station is opened to help commuters living in East Delhi areas like Patparganj, Mayur Vihar, Laxmi Nagar and Shakarpur, it is quite far from the main road and people would have to trek quite a long distance to reach the station.
Though DMRC has provided feeder bus services on two different routes, commuters said the real benefit would be seen when Metro comes near their homes. “This is much better than sweating it out in Blueline buses. I think I would take a rickshaw or walk up to the station till the Metro extends further,” said Rupesh Sharma, who works in Connaught Place. “Nothing could be as comfortable as a Metro ride, especially in this scorching heat,” he added.
Though the Naraina based office of Pawan Kumar, an accounts executive and resident of Taxila Apartments in Patparganj, is not on the Metro map, he doesn't want to drive his car anymore. “I would take the Metro to any other West Delhi station and then take an auto rickshaw or a bus. I don’t want to get stuck in traffic jams and long traffic signals anymore,”
“Metro would mean no more waiting, sweating and fighting with other motorists. And I would reach office on time for a change,” Kumar smiled. Keeping in mind the commuters who would like to park their cars and take the Metro, DMRC has built a parking lot at Yamuna Bank station that can accommodate up to 400 cars over an area spreading over 5,200 sq. mt.
Before this station opened, commuters had to cross the Yamuna to reach the Indraprastha station or reach the faraway Shastri Park station for the Metro. Now instead of using Line-I (Dilshad Garden-Rithala), commuters can come directly here.
And it is not only office goers who are planning to take full advantage of the Metro.
“I’m going to Connaught Place to shop today. I usually take an auto because I don’t like travelling in buses but from now on, I would save a lot of money and energy travelling in Metro,” said Soma Singh, a homemaker and resident of Mayur Vihar Phase I, enjoying the Metro ride.