April 19, 2024, 2:14 am

Overcrowding in Metro Rail, DMTCL plans to increase compartments

  • Update Time : Saturday, January 27, 2024
  • 29 Time View
Photo: Collected

Desk Report:

Metro rail services on Uttara-Motijheel started in full swing, extending its running time. This has increased passenger pressure. Especially, in the morning before the start of office and after the office in the afternoon, the trains become overcrowded. As a result, metro rail authorities are planning to reduce the stoppage time (headway) between the two trains and extend the number of coaches due to the increase in the number of passengers.

“Considering the passenger demand, instead of every 10 minutes, there are plans to run trains every 7-8 minutes and the number of coaches per train has been intended to increase from six to eight,” said sources of the Dhaka Mass Transit Company Limited (DMTCL), the managing body of Metro Rail. “But for this, operators will be needed.”

Metro Rail has been plying for 13 and a half hours (13.5 hours) on the Uttara-Motijheel route from January 20. The first train leaves at 7:10 am and the last train leaves at 8:40 pm. Passenger pressure has also increased a lot. Demands have been made to reduce the time between two trains and increase the number of coaches.

According to DMTCL sources, currently, more than 1.5 to 2 lakh passengers are traveling by metro rail. MRT pass sales have also increased. About 40,000 passes have been sold in the last five days. Commuters are buying MRT passes to save time buying tickets.

Before this, DMTCL Managing Director MAN Siddique said “eight trains are running during peak hours and six during off-peak hours”. There is a per-standby train. Trains will arrive at the stations every 10 minutes during peak hours and every 12 minutes during off-peak hours. Out of 13.5 hours of train movement, the period from “11:31 am to 4:00 pm is considered as off-peak hour”.

Sources said that “currently 24 trains are ready for MRT-6” — 8 of these are running and the rest are in the depot. Operators are required to reduce the movement of time between two trains.

“Time reduction has been mentioned before. It will be gradually reduced to 7-8 minutes. It will likely reduce more later. A survey is being conducted at each station in this regard. It will be fixed by talking with the passengers,” DMTCL General Manager (Operations) Mohammad Iftikhar Hossain told the media. “We also have an idea to increase the coaches in the trains.”

As per the infrastructure of the station, a train can have a maximum of eight coaches. So, it will take time to fix all the technical aspects and increase the compartment.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the Uttara-Agargaon section of Metro Rail on 28 December 2022. Agargaon-Motijheel section was opened on November 4 last year. Before January 20, the train was running on the Agargaon-Motijheel route till 11:30 pm. It now takes 33.6 minutes to cover the distance of 20.1 kilometers to Uttara-Motijheel.

The authorities said that the work of the Motijheel to Kamalapur section will be completed by the end of this year.

Over the past few days, long queues for tickets have been seen at every station. Passengers are taking a long time to buy one-way tickets. Regular commuters buy MRT passes to save this time. Because these pass holders can enter the station and board the train directly. Each pass costs Tk 500 and can be recharged when the money runs out. DMTCL sources said that 40,000 MRT passes have been sold in the last five days.

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