Services on DMRC’s Magenta Line remain suspended for over 4 hours in Delhi
An early morning fire at a furniture market near Kalindi Kunj Metro station on the Magenta Line (connecting Botanical Garden and Janakpuri West) affected services on the corridor for over four hours on Friday.
The raging blaze and smoke halted Metro services between Jasola Vihar Shaheen Bagh and Botanical Garden in Noida at 6am and trains plied in two loops—from Janakpuri West to Jasola Vihar Shaheen Bagh and another between Kalindi Kunj and Botanical Garden.
“Due to an incident of fire reported from the area adjacent to the Metro viaduct between Kalindi Kunj and Jasola Vihar, Shaheen Bagh stations of Magenta Line, services were regulated from 6am to 10.20am as a precautionary measure,” a statement issued by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) read.
The Metro said that services were not available between Jasola Vihar Shaheen Bagh and Kalindi Kunj stations and to ferry the stranded passengers, the DMRC roped in feeder buses.
“In another loop between a small section of Kalindi Kunj and Botanical Garden stations, services were run as shuttle—one train used to move to and from the section,” the statement read.
Senior officials said though no damage to viaduct or overhead electrification was observed after the fire was controlled, teams of technicians are assessing the infrastructure on the section to avoid any problems in the future.
Officials added even when the flames were controlled around 9am, the smoke from the site made it difficult to resume services on the section.
The impact of Friday’s incident also had ripple effects on the DMRC’s Yellow Line, which connects with the Magenta Line at Hauz Khas, where some passenger spillover was reported.
“Slow movement of trains along the Magenta Line in the early hours of the day caused bunching up on trains on the Yellow Line as well, but delay was not very severe and services resumed pace by afternoon,” a DMRC spokesperson said.
Commuters said trains were delayed, running at intervals of over eight minutes. One commuter, Himanshu Bhatia, said, “My train was stuck at Qutub station for over 30 minutes, with no explanation. This is the third time this month that trains on this route have been delayed.”
Though the Metro released the information of the delay at 6.20 am on its social media handles, several commuters complained that they were caught unaware in crowded trains, with announcements made either inside trains or in stations.
“The only information that we were getting was that the notice board was flashing 15 to 20 minutes as waiting time for the next train, which suggested a fault. If prior information was provided, we would have made other arran-gements,” said Somrita Banerjee, engineer working in Noida.
Twitter was flooded with angry tweets blaming government agencies for allowing illegal constructions around important public infrastructure.
“No checks on illegal constructions around city’s lifeline. The govt must take responsibility (sic),” tweeted Raajendra Singh.
This is not the first time that such a mishap has halted Metro operations. In April, last year a fire broke out at a slum colony in East Delhi’s Mansarovar Park, below the Delhi Metro’s Red Line (connecting Rithala and New Bus Adda). The rescue operation, which lasted for over three hours, suspended services at three stations between Mansarovar Park and Dilshad Garden.