With offices and educational institutions gradually opening up in Bengaluru and the government lifting several Covid restrictions, the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) is considering the need to revert to pre-pandemic timings of Metro services.
This will, however, only happen after the Bengaluru police lifts the prohibitory orders which are currently in place till September 13 in view of the rise in Covid cases. Night curfew is also in force in the city from 9 pm to 5 am. The prohibitory orders prevent the assembly of four or more people in public places, with the exception of bus stands, metro stations, railway stations and airports.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, BMRCL Public Relations Officer BL Yeshwanth Chavan said, “We will consider reverting to the old timings of the Metro only after certain restrictions are lifted and also after economic activities restart.”
Currently, Metro trains operate between 7 am and 8 pm. “Earlier, the services started at 5 am. We will wait and see if the demand for Metro services is increasing and will consider revising the timings,” he added.
The BMRCL officials pointed out that before the pandemic struck, the Metro saw a ridership of around five lakh passengers a day which has now dwindled to 1.75 lakh. “After the Kengeri-Baiyappanahalli stretch was opened on August 30, the number of passengers has increased by 5-8 per cent,” Metro officials said.
Commercial operations on the extended Bengaluru Metro line between Mysore Road and Kengeri began a day after Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri inaugurated the stretch on August 29.