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Monday, November 29, 2021

Bengaluru: Metro commuters seek resumption of services till midnight

Though the state government had lifted the night curfew – imposed between 10 pm and 5 am – on November 6 following a decline in Covid cases, the Metro services are available only till 10 pm

Written by Darshan Devaiah BP | Bengaluru |
Updated: November 16, 2021 10:17:15 am
Although the state government had lifted the night curfew, the Metro services were available only till 10 pm. (File)

After a gap of nearly 20 months since Covid-19 broke out, the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) on Sunday resumed its night service buses across the city as the government recently lifted the night curfew imposed across the state. However, despite the increasing demand from Metro commuters, the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) is yet to take a call on extending the operational hours of the city’s Namma Metro service.

At present, the Metro operates from 6 am to 10 pm. The state government had, on November 6, lifted the night curfew – imposed between 10 pm and 5 am – following a decrease in the number of Covid cases in the city.

“Since the last Metro service ends at 10 pm, there is a huge rush in the station as well as inside trains, increasing the risk of Covid transmission. Timings of the service should be extended as many depend on the Metro for their daily commute,” said Sharath, a Metro user who works at a tech company in MG Road.

Rakshitha, who works in the city’s hospitality industry, said she often has to rely on cabs and autorickshaws since the Metro service is not available after 10 pm. “Many times, I have missed the last Metro since we occasionally have to work beyond 10 pm. Earlier we had Metro till midnight, but now we are forced to take cabs or autorickshaws, which not only charge high rates at night but are also less safe for us,” said

Speaking to The Indian Express, Chief Public Relations Officer of BMRCL B L Yashwanth Chavan said, “We are in a discussion about extending Metro services, but have to see various aspects before taking a final decision. We are seeing high ridership on the Metro, but only on certain days. We are analysing the ridership data now and very soon we will take a final decision on extending the Metro’s operational hours.”

After the service was resumed on July 1, Namma Metro’s ridership touched 2.9 lakh on November 8 for the first time and now, according to Chavan, it sees an average ridership of 2.5 lakh on a daily basis.

Meanwhile, the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) said 70 of its buses resumed night services on various routes across the city from Sunday.

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