Delhi Metro to continue with 50% capacity, standing travel banned
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has said its services in the national capital will continue with 50 per cent seating in accordance with guidelines in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19). “Passengers will be allowed to travel by seating only on alternate seats with no provision for standing travel till further directions,” DMRC tweeted on Sunday.
Metro services resumed on June 7 after nearly a month as the daily cases and deaths started ebbing in Delhi. The Delhi government on June 5 urged commuters to follow Covid-appropriate behaviour inside the stations and the compartments when travelling. The government also announced that the number of trains will be increased to full strength in a graded manner from June 9 following which services will operate at normal frequency.
However, a top doctor in Delhi suggested the government should not start Metro services immediately. “For one to two weeks, we must experiment with 33-50% (occupancy). We should go slow otherwise the lid will open up and we will not be able to suppress it. We can’t eradicate this virus,” Dr Naveet Wig, chairperson of AIIMS Covid Taskforce, told news agency ANI on June 6.
Delhi has so far recorded 1,431,139 cases, 24,823 deaths and over 1.4 million recoveries due to the Covid-19 disease. On Sunday, the national capital saw another low of 255 cases and 23 deaths, according to the health department’s bulletin.
Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday announced relaxations under the third phase of unlock in Delhi. Kejriwal said shops and malls, which were earlier open on an odd-even basis, can now open daily from 8am to 10pm. Restaurants can function with 50 per cent seating capacity. Marriages will only be allowed at court or homes with not more than 20 people while only 20 will be allowed to attend funerals.
All kinds of public gatherings - social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious - remain prohibited. Schools, colleges and all other educational institutions including coaching centres will also remain closed. Swimming pools, stadiums, sports complexes, cinema theaters, multiplexes are also closed until further notice.
(With agency inputs)