A first-person report by Roopesh Kohad of the first day in operation of the Delhi Metro, December 25

“There is no place to sit anywhere in the whole station which is true for all other stations signifying the fast paced metro culture. There are yellow lines across all the platforms in all stations for people to stand behind them lest they collide with train. Finally, the train started shunting. Wow, what a beauty, its two orange lights glowing, LED display showing 001 and its horn so loud and sharp. As it made its way into the platform, people started shouting slogans, ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai!.’ Then some people started ‘Jai shree Ram!’ God…, this saffronisation will never be away. I thought somebody would ‘[Delhi Metro Railway Corporation] ki Jai!’ or ‘Engineers ki Jai’ but none did. It was clicks galore at platform as many people took photgraphs. I also clicked away in this free for all frenzy. As soon as the doors opened there was huge uproar and clapping. People jumped and ran like some dog is behind them, to find to their surprise that whole train is connected, one big tube in which you could drift anywhere. I also boarded from one of the doors. After a minute or two, doors closed automatically and we left again with huge uproar inside.”

Posted December 30, 2002

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