Unlike the Mumbai railway network, Delhi never had a mass transportation systems besides the buses.But after the start of the Delhi Metro in December 2002 , it has not just made traveling easy and comfortable but also made significant environmental and social impact on the Capital.Traffic had been an utter koas in Delhi before the start of the Metro rail, but there has been a progressive increase in the reduction in daily vehicle demand due to people shifting to the Metro rail for commuting.
- A study conducted by the Central Road Research Institute (CRRI), reveals that the Metro railway has taken the share of 22,697 vehicles and this share is projected to increase approximately to 40,000 for all other modes of travel such as cars, buses, two wheelers and auto-rickshaws by the end of 2007. Correspondingly, 16.6 lakh vehicle km will be saved till 2007 and this is likely to result in a saving of various types such as maintenance cost of road vehicles by Rs. 218 crore, fuel saving worth Rs. 172 crore and saving in road maintenance cost of Rs. 288 crore
- The Metro railway has resulted in reduced consumption of fuel containing hydrocarbons, the study claims this has resulted in emission savings of 2,275 tonnes. These saving are likely to go up to 3,968 tonnes by the end of this year.
- People in the city save 66 minutes every day on an average by travelling to and fro by the Metro rail, which has resulted in a saving of Rs. 415 crore up to 2006 as their earning capacity time increases.
"The city of Delhi with a population of round 16.2 million should have had an MRTS network of at least 300 KM by this time, whereas actually it is still 65.10 kms at the take-off stage. Delhi has all the ideal dress-up for an excellent Mass Rapid Transit System to be brought in. It has wide roads (roads cover 23% of the city area) where road possession for construction is not difficult (except in the old city area). Implementation will also not involve demolition of large cale private properties. Most of the land required is under Government control and hence can be easily acquired."
The Delhi Metro alone cannot solve the ailing public transport crisis in the capital. With a public bus service, there has been no drop in the number of 600 new vehicles registered in Delhi every day.I have always maintained that India has made significant improvements to its infrastructure and is expected to make more in the next few years. But India has huge population and as long as people continue to move into cities in large numbers the government may find it difficult to fix the urban infrastructure issues of the metro cities. Hence significant policy changes are necessary for economic development to spread to all areas of the country to slow down the pace of migration of rural indians into cities.