Very few passengers were seen even during peak hours.
After a gap of over 150 days, the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) resumed Namma Metro services on Monday. However, during the peak commuting morning hours, trains were almost empty. BMRCL is running services only on the purple line from Baiyappanahalli to Mysuru Road station.
Staff of the Metro undertook thermal screening of the passengers before allowing them inside the stations. Applying hand sanitisers before entering the station has been made compulsory. As per the standard operating procedure (SoP), only smart card holders were allowed to travel in the Metro.
Some passengers said that they are happy with the safety arrangements made at the stations. Anusha T said, “The BMRCL has taken various safety measures. I was a regular traveller of Namma Metro from Indirangar to Rajajinagar. I am happy that services have resumed now. I will get down at Vijayanagar, from there I will take an auto. As it is the first day, only a few passengers were travelling in the Metro. The number will increase in the coming days.”
A final year student of Government Arts College who boarded the train at Baiyappanahalli said that it was very useful for him as classes had begun. “I used to take the bus to college from the past few days. Now that the Metro has started, it is very useful. Many of my friends have also benefited from it,” he said.
To minimise contact at security checkpoints, commuters were asked to put their bags, phone, wallet, earphones and other things on trays and get them scanned through the baggage screening machines.
Chief PRO of the BMRCL Yeshwanth Chavan said that, as previously announced, limited services will be operated on the first day for three hours in morning and three hours in the evening. “We are planning to operate 91 round trips of Metro trains on the purple line with five minutes frequency. For the first few trains, only skeletal number of passengers travelled and numbers are gradually picking up,” said the official.
Passengers, however, said they found it difficult to download the mobile app to recharge the smart cards . A few days ago, the BMRCL announced the mobile app will be made available for recharging the smart cards. However, the link was made available only on the official website of the BMRCL. Many passengers complained that they could not download the app as it was not available on Play Store. The officials said they will address the issue.