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Prime Minister Narendra Modi flags off country's first-ever driverless metro train

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will flag off the country's first-ever fully automated driverless metro train on Monday. The new service is being inaugurated on the 37 KM stretch of Delhi Metro's Magenta Line ( Janakpuri West- Botanical Garden) along with it, the National Common Mobility Card( NCMC) dubbed as 'one nation one card' will also be inaugurated for operations primarily on the Airport Express Line. This will allow passengers carrying a RuPay -debit card issued in the last 18 months by 23 banks to swipe these for Metro travel. Passengers from any part of the country will now be able to travel on the Airport Express line using this card. The same facility will available on the entire metro network by 2022. 

With the commencement of these newly equipped trains, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation will enter the elite league of "seven percent of world's metro network that can operate without drivers". They plan to operate similar services on another major corridor as well. The 57 KM long Pink Line Metro will operate driverless from mid-2021. This would increase the driverless network of the Delhi Metro to around 94kms, which is nearly 9% of Delhi Metro’s total network.

DMRC officials explained that the driverless train technology has pre-set standards for automation called ‘Grades of Automation’ (GoA). In GoA 1, trains are run by one driver and, in GoA 2 and GoA 3, the role of the driver is reduced to operating doors and taking over in case of emergencies (the starting and halting of trains are automated). Finally, in the GoA 4, trains are set on a completely unattended operations mode. Beginning today, the Magenta line between Janakpuri West and Botanical Garden will adopt GoA 3 for the services.

Keeping in mind the current pandemic and maintaining the social distancing the inauguration will be held through video conferencing and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will give the green signal to the train virtually today at 11:00 AM.

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