Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday flagged off the country's first ever fully-automated driverless train service on the Magenta Line of the Delhi Metro.
With the commencement of these new-generation trains, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has entered the elite league of "seven per cent of world's Metro networks" which can operate services without drivers, according to DMRC.
"This shows how fast India is progressing towards a smart system. The Delhi metro is now connected through National Common Mobility Card (NCMC)," PM Modi said on the occasion.
"A few years ago, there was not much focus on smart systems. There was lackadaisical approach, so we saw a huge difference between urbanisation and technological development. Our government changed that," he added.
PM Modi further said that urbanisation should be considered as an opportunity to fulfil the goal of ease of living.
NCMC, dubbed as 'One Nation One Card', is an inter-operable transport card that allows the holders to also pay for their bus travel, toll taxes, parking charges, retail shopping and even withdraw money.
These innovations are going to herald a new era of travelling comfort and enhanced mobility for the residents of Delhi and other cities in the National Capital Region.
The commercial operation of these new-generation trains, set to be a major technological feat, will begin later the same day, after the event, news agency PTI quoted a DMRC official as saying.
This was the first major event of Delhi Metro in 2020 which saw an unprecedented lockdown in the earlier months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Delhi Metro had resumed services with curtailed operation on the Yellow Line from September 7 after being closed for over five months. Its currently operational network spans about 390 km with 285 stations across 11 corridors (including Noida-Greater Noida line).
Delhi Metro had begun its commercial operation on December 25, 2002, a day after the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had inaugurated DMRC's first stretch, spanning 8.2 km from Shahdara to Tis Hazari, with just six stations.