Delhi Metro on Sunday found an admirer in Pratibha Patil when she became the first President to travel on the modern transport system that has changed the way the capital commutes and described it as "proud symbol" of the country's progress.
77-year-old Patil, who will demit office later this month, boarded a special six-coach Metro train from Udyog Bhawan station this morning and travelled up to Sultanpur by using a paid smart card.
She came back to Udyog Bhawan by the Metro.
Accompanied by Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit, urban development secretary Sudhir Krishna and Delhi Metro chief Mangu Singh, the President was all praise for the modern transport system and was keen to know about its functioning.
"Delhi Metro is a proud symbol of the tremendous progress that India has made in the last decade. It is a comfortable, convenient and eco-friendly mass transport system, which is benefiting lakhs of people every day," she wrote in the visitors' book at the Udyog Bhawan station on her return.
"I am extremely pleased to share the experience of the people by travelling in Delhi Metro today. I wish DMRC all the best for their future endeavours," she wrote.
Though many VVIPs like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and others have visited the Metro, Patil is the first President of the country to travel by the Delhi Metro.
Vice President Hamid Ansari had visited the Delhi Metro on December 2, 2011.
During the visit, Singh explained the technical features associated with Metro train operations to the President who enquired about the special features of the modern Metro trains.