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Rapid transit in India

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Rapid transit in India

Rapid transit in India consists of bus, metro, monorail and light rail systems. The first rapid transit system in India was the Kolkata Metro, which started operations in 1984. The Delhi Metro was India's first modern metro and the third rapid transit system in India overall, after the Kolkata Metro and Chennai Mass Rapid Transit System (Chennai MRTS), beginning operations in 2002. Rapid Metro Rail Gurgaon, which started operations in November 2013, is India's first privately owned and operated metro.[1] The Mumbai Monorail, which opened on 7 February 2014 is the first monorail in India, since the closing of the Patiala State Monorail Trainways in 1927.

In 2009, it was decided to invest 2000 billion (US$32.4 billion) on metro rail projects in the following ten years.[2] It is planned that all Indian cities having population more that 2 million will have metro rail system.[3] Currently, rapid transit systems operate in 15 cities and more are under construction or in planning in several cities of India.[4]

Bus Rapid Transit System

Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) is a rapid transit for city bus service in India. The following table shows BRTS in India along with details.

Green background for the systems that are under construction. Blue background for the systems that are currently in planning.

System City Start of Operations System Lines System Length (KM) Stations
Ahmedabad BRTS Ahmedabad 14 October 2009 12 75 126
Delhi BRTS Delhi 2008 7 115.5
Indore BRTS Indore 2013 10 126.46


Jaipur BRTS Jaipur July 2010 2
Pune BRTS Pune December 2006 2 16.5
Rajkot BRTS Rajkot 1 October 2012 1 63 19
Surat BRTS Surat 26 January 2014 2 29.9 50
Vijayawada BRTS Vijayawada 2011
Bhopal BRTS Bhopal 10 186 230
Bhubaneswar BRTS Bhubaneswar 2015 2 66.32 TBD
Hubli-Dharwad BRTS Hubli, Dharwad 2014 2 70 33
Kolkata BRTS Kolkata 1 15.5
Mumbai BRTS Mumbai 2014 1 11.7
Pimpri-Chinchwad BRTS Pimpri-Chinchwad 4 112
Visakapatnam BRTS Visakapatnam 42
Bangalore BRTS Bangalore 14 282
Chennai BRTS Chennai 1 70.3 21
Coimbatore BRTS Coimbatore 1 27.6
Hyderabad BRTS Hyderabad 2 39
Lucknow BRTS Lucknow
Madurai BRTS Madurai 2
Mysore BRTS Mysore
Nagpur BRTS Nagpur
Tiruchirappalli BRTS Tiruchirappalli 2 24


Metro rail

Metro rail lines in India are composed of both standard gauge and broad gauge. Projects like the Delhi Metro used broad gauge for their earliest lines but most new projects in India are on standard gauge as rolling stock imported from Europe is on Standard Gauge. One exception is the Ahmedabad Metro, which will use Broad gauge, as there is more space available inside the coach.[5] In the long term, using Broad gauge may also allow for freight movement of containers from the Indian Railway network on the Metro train network and increased capacity within the train cars.Although Metro supposed to be mass rapid transit system, Indian metro trains are slower than their counterparts in other parts of the world, as they are mostly overground and have sharp curves. For example, Bangalore metro has a maximum speed of 40.5 km/h on curves with average speed of 30 km/h and Hyderabad Metro will have average speed of 25 km/h.[6][7]

Green background for the systems that are under construction. Blue background for the systems that are currently in planning.
City System Start of operations System Length No of Lines Voltage Notes
IO1 P2 UC3 IO1 P2 UC3
Kolkata Kolkata Metro 24 October 1984 28.4 km 90 km 1 14 5 750VDC
3rd Rail
First mass rapid transit system in India
and the 17th zone of the Indian Railways.
Chennai Chennai MRTS 1 November 1995 19.34 km 1 25kV AC It is planned for the MRTS to be taken over by the
Chennai Metro Rail Limited once the Chennai Metro
becomes operational.[8]
Delhi Delhi Metro 24 December 2002 192.7 km 6 2 25kV AC India's first modern rapid transit system.
Bangalore Namma Metro 20 October 2011 16.6 km 114.39 42.3 km 2 2 750VDC
3rd Rail
First metro in India to introduce Wi-Fi onboard trains.[9]
Gurgaon Rapid MetroRail Gurgaon 14 November 2013 5.1 km 1 1 N/A India's first fully privately financed metro,[10]
and the first metro system in the country to
auction naming rights for its stations.[11]
Mumbai Mumbai Metro 8 June 2014 11.40 km 1 7 25kV AC in dispute
Jaipur Jaipur Metro December 2014 [12] 32.5 km 2 1 N/A
Chennai Chennai Metro March 2015[13] 45.1 km[14] 2 25kV AC
Hyderabad Hyderabad Metro March 2015[15] 71.6 km 3 N/A
Navi Mumbai Navi Mumbai Metro 2016 106.4 km [16] 4 1 N/A
Kochi Kochi Metro 2016 25.6 km 1 N/A Kochi is the first Tier-II city in India to be
granted a metro under the Central Government's plan to
allow cities having population more than 20 lakhs
to have a metro rail system.[17]
Lucknow Lucknow Metro 2017 36 km N/A
Ahmedabad & Gandhinagar MetroLink Express
Gandhinagar and
2018[18][19] 83 km[20] 5 N/A
Bhopal Bhopal Metro 3 25kV AC
Bhubaneswar & Cuttack Bhubaneswar Metro 30 km[21] N/A
Chandigarh Chandigarh Metro 2018 37.5 km 7 N/A
Indore Indore Metro 2020 30 km 3 25kV AC
Kanpur Kanpur Metro 2018 84 km 8 N/A
Ludhiana Ludhiana Metro 2017–18 2 25kVAC
Nagpur Nagpur Metro 2018[22] 38.2 km 2 N/A
Nasik Greater Nasik Metro N/A Proposed Metro line which will connect
Igatpuri, Deolali, Nasik Road, Nasik Central and
Ojhar Airport[23]
Patna Patna Metro 2016 60 km 2 N/A
Pune Pune Metro 2018 82 km 4 N/A
Surat Surat Metro 2018 3 N/A
Srinagar Srinagar Metro 2 N/A
Vijayawada Vijayawada Metro[24] 2018[25] 26 km[26] 2 ...
Visakhapatnam Vizag Metro[27] 2018 30 km ...
Mumbai Western railway elevated corridor 2020 63.27 km 1 N/A
Guwahati Guwahati Metro 44.2 km 2 N/A
National Capital Region National Capital Region Metro 2021 381 km [28] 3 25kV AC

1In operation Number of lines currently operating. Line is considered to be operating if services are running on at least one section.
2Planned Lines that are planned to be built but construction has not yet started
3Under construction Number of lines currently under construction. Does not include lines that are "In operation". 4N/A = information Not Available.


The first monorail in India was the Kundala Valley Railway in Kundala Valley, near Munnar, Kerala. It was a privately owned monorail system, that operated from 1902 to 1908. That year the system was converted to a narrow gauge railway, which operated till 1924, when it was destroyed completely by floods.[29] The Patiala State Monorail Trainways which opened in February 1907 and closed in 1927 was the second monorail system in India.[30][31]

The Mumbai Monorail, which opened on 2 February 2014 is the first operational monorail in India, since the closing of the Patiala State Monorail Trainways in 1927.[32] Many other Indian cities have monorail projects, as a feeder system to the metro, in different phases of planning.

Pink background for the systems that are terminated.Green background for the systems that are under-construction. Blue background for the systems that are currently in planning.
City System Operations began System length (km) Lines Stations
Munnar Kundala Valley Railway 1902-1908 5 km 1
Patiala Patiala State Monorail Trainways 1907-1927 80 km 1
Mumbai Mumbai Monorail 2 February 2014 8.26 km 1 7
Chennai Chennai Monorail 2018 57 km 3 37
Allahabad Allahabad Monorail 70.4 km 2
Bangalore Bangalore Monorail 60 km
Coimbatore Coimbatore Monorail
Delhi Delhi Monorail 90 km
Indore Indore Monorail
Kanpur Kanpur Monorail 63 km
Kolkata Kolkata Monorail 72 km
Navi Mumbai Navi Mumbai Monorail 36.82 km
Patna Patna Monorail 32 km
Pune Pune Monorail 52 km
Ahmedabad Ahmedabad Monorail 30 km 4
Aizawl Aizawl Monorail 5 km

Light rail

Green background for the systems that are currently under construction. Blue background for the systems that are currently in planning.

System City Opening Year System length (km) No. of lines
Delhi Light Rail Transit Delhi 45 3
Kolkata LRTS Kolkata 2
Thiruvananthapuram Light Metro Kozhikode 2016 14.5 km 1
Pune LRTS Pune 2
Thiruvananthapuram Light Metro Thiruvananthapuram 2016 41.8 km 1


Initially, state governments attempted to implement metro rail projects through various Tramways Act. However, the Commissioner of Railways Safety (CRS), who operates under the [33]

Construction of metros in India are governed by the centrally enacted "The Metro Railways (Construction of Works) Act, 1978" which defines itself as an act to provide for the construction of works relating to metro railways in the metropolitan cities and for matters connected therewith.[34] Operation and maintenance of metros is governed by "The Delhi Metro Railway (Operation and Maintenance) Act, 2002". Both laws were amended in 2009 with the passing of "The Metro Railways (Amendment) Act, 2009".[35] The amendment expanded the coverage of both the acts to all metropolitan areas of India.

According to Ministry of Urban Development (India) Kamal Nath, ""Since the Metro rail is a central subject, it has been decided that all such projects in the country, whether within one municipal area or beyond, shall be taken up under the Central Metro Acts."[36]

Metro coach factories in India


BEML manufactures Rolling Stock for Delhi Metro and Namma Metro in a consortium with Hyundai Rotem BEML has supplied more than 200 coaches to DMRC and has an order of 150 coaches from Bangalore Metro. Jaipur Metro has also ordered to manufacture, supply, test and commission 10 train sets of four-car each, totalling 40 cars to Jaipur Metro Project. BEML is one of the leading manufacturer of Rail and Metro coaches. Metro Systems using/will be using BEML Rolling Stocks are:

  • Delhi Metro - 200 coaches
  • Namma Metro - 150 coaches
  • Jaipur Metro - 40 coaches
  • Hyderabad Metro - 171 coaches


Bombardier built a £26m factory in Savli, Gujarat after it won a contract to supply 614 cars to the Delhi Metro.[37] Production at Savli began in June 2009.[38]

In June 2012, the plant won an order to supply semi-finished bogies to Australia.[38]

Sri City

In 2013, Alstom built a factory in Sri City, Andhra Pradesh after it won a €243 million contract to supply 168 cars to the Chennai Metro.[39] The 156-acre plant will be used to supply trains to cities in India and abroad.[40]

See also


  1. ^ Rapid Metro work in last leg, to start by September
  2. ^ "India to invest Rs 200,000 crore in Metro rail in 10 years". The Times of India. 11 September 2009. 
  3. ^ Indian cities can't do without a Metro' – The Times of India"'". The Times of India. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Ahmedabad Metro to be driverless, gets a nod for broad gauge". The Times Of India. 26 July 2013. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ Hyderabad Metro Rail to be slowest in India' - The Times of India"'". The Times Of India. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Gurgaon metro link to be completed in 30 months
    The Times of India, 16 July 2009.
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Pune took the lead, but lost steam in Metro race - Times Of India". 2013-08-05. Retrieved 2013-09-28. 
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^ "Private firm to survey Nashik for metro rail - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
  24. ^ 
  25. ^ 
  26. ^ 
  27. ^ "Vizag on track for metro rail project? - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
  28. ^ "Coming soon: Rapid travel in Delhi, NCR". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 4 August 2013. 
  29. ^ "Mumbai-made monorail ran 100 years ago – Analysis – DNA". 7 November 2012. Retrieved 14 December 2012. 
  30. ^ "A mono-tramway opened in February, 1907 connects Basi with railway at Sirhind". Retrieved 14 December 2012. 
  31. ^ Unusual railways by Mr. J. R. Day and Mr. B. G. Wilson
  32. ^ "Mumbai monorail to run in two years".  
  33. ^ a b B V Shiv Shankar, TNN 1 Mar 2012, 02.06AM IST (1 March 2012). "Metro rail may need to get its act together". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 December 2012. 
  34. ^ "The Metro Railways (Construction of Works) Act, 1978". Retrieved 14 December 2012. 
  35. ^
  36. ^
  37. ^ "Gujarat state in the fast lane of Indian economy". BBC News. 26 February 2012. 
  38. ^ a b [1]
  39. ^ [2]
  40. ^ [3]
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