Bengaluru, Jan 15 (IANS) Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Thursday flagged off the 6.3 km extended stretch of metro rail in the city's southern suburbs.
"The service, available for public from Friday, has been extended from Yelachanahalli to Anjanapura on the north-south corridor (green line) and has 5 stations," an official of the state-run Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) told IANS.
Union Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri participated in the event virtually from New Delhi through video-conferencing, while Union Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister and Bangalore North MP D.V. Sadananada Gowda, who represents the Bangalore North Lok Sabha seat, state cabinet ministers and local MLAs R. Ashok, S. Suresh Kumar, Somshekar, Arvind Limbavali and Byrathi Basavaraj were also present on the occasion.
"The metro rail service extension is a step towards the goal of Bengaluru Mission 2022 to enable faster commute and smart mobility options in the city," said Yediyurappa on the occasion.
The extended service project was two years behind schedule for various reasons, including land acquisition, shifting of utilities and displacing houses and shops that were on the route.
The extension is part of the metro rail network's second phase, which will cover an additional 74 km in the city at a cost of Rs 30,695 crore by 2024 and will have 72 stations.
The first phase, which has been in service since October 2011, covers 42 km on the north-south and east-west (purple line) corridors spanning 40 stations.
As the most popular transport mode for its punctual, efficient and clean service in air-conditioned coaches, the metro was ferrying over 4 lakh commuters on the twin routes daily during pre-Covid days.
"We hope to commence service on the 7.5 km extended route from Mysore Road station to Kengeri on the purple line from July," said the official.
Metro service resumed on September 7 in phases after remaining suspended since March 25 when the Covid-induced lockdown was enforced. A number of rules and restrictions to ensure safety of commuters were rolled out.