The delay in starting the Lucknow Metro for public use cannot be attributed to the change in political power at the helm of Uttar Pradesh, said noted civil engineer E. Sreedharan, popularly known as the ‘Metro Man’, here on Thursday.
Mr. Sreedharan said the transition in power from the Samajwadi Party (SP) to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in U.P. had no impact on the “planning or schedule” of the Lucknow Metro’s construction. The postponement of the deadline was due to “unavoidable reasons” such as the delay in receiving coaches and timely Railway clearances, he said. He expressed confidence that the Metro rail would be running in the U.P. capital by the third or fourth week of July.
Mr. Sreedharan said Metro projects across India were awaiting government clearances as the Centre was finalising a new Metro policy.
Work for the Lucknow Metro began in September 2014 and the trial run on its priority corridor was conducted on December 1, 2016. The previous SP government had announced the services would begin on March 26. The target, however, could not be met, with the BJP government criticising the previous Akhikesh Yadav regime for doing things “hastily”.
Despite the repeated extension of the deadline, Mr. Sreedharan said the Lucknow Metro could boast of having the fastest first section of any metro be be completed anywhere in the country.