JICA lauds Delhi Metro
The execution of the first phase of the Delhi Metro has won accolades from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the funding partners of the Delhi Metro network. In a report compiled by a research agency on behalf of JICA, the Delhi Metro phase I project was found to be of relevance, as it provided infrastructure in the transportation sector and contributed in the growth of the nation, said a Delhi Metro spokesperson. The first phase connected 65km of the city. The report, submitted by the Foundation for Advanced Studies on International Development (FASID), a Japan-based research and training organization, evaluated the phase I of the Metro project on various parameters, including timely execution, budget, sustainability as well as project details like length of the lines/corridors, stations, rolling stock among others. “The study rated Delhi Metro’s project execution effort at ‘3’, which is the highest possible grade indicating that the performance of DMRC was excellent,” added the spokesperson. The report also said the Phase-I was found to be consistent with India's development policies, development needs and the Japanese aid policy. The first phase consisted of three lines – Shahdara to Rithala, Vishwavidyalaya to Central Secretariat, and Indraprastha to Dwarka sub-city. About 60 per cent of the project cost was financed by the government of Japan through a soft loan through the JICA, which also funded the Metro’s second phase. It is also going to fund the third phase of the Delhi Metro network. The study further said that the system was consistently improving or equipping itself with better techniques, such as ATO (Automatic Train Operations) system and shortening headways by modifying operations, said the DMRC spokesperson. “JICA also appreciated the fact that the project was completed within the stipulated time frame,” said the DMRC official. The first phase was sanctioned in September 1996 with a time line of completion in 10 years. The construction started on October 1, 1998 and the project was completed 2 years and 7 months before the stipulated date.