‘Had to pay Rs 500 for cab!’

December 5 was a day on which commuting by Metro was nothing less than an ordeal. I stay in Noida and that day I had gone to Janpath. While returning, I had to take the Metro towards Noida City Centre from Mandi House. The moment I reached the station, I saw a huge crowd. There was barely any space to walk!

Generally, the Mandi House station is crowded at all times of the day. But that day, it was a mad, bad crowd. All passages were chock-a-block. There was no space on the platform to stand. People had formed a long queue to board the trains – starting from the stairs. And that day, the commuters from Vaishali were also taking the same train because that route had a problem. Trains from the Vaishali route were going up to Yamuna Bank only.

So, people who had to go towards both these destinations were waiting on the same platform, which added to the crush.

I could hear people saying they had been waiting for about an hour for the train to arrive. So you can imagine how many people would have thronged the platform by then. I did not want to push and shove people to make my way. Being a woman, I was more uncomfortable as a few men were pushing me. When I asked them not to, they tried to justify it by saying “There is no space here, what can we do?”

I even heard of cases where people lost their purses – or maybe they were stolen. It was all a mess. Elderly people were especially inconvenienced. Metro staff did not have answers to our queries, which created a lot of confusion.

I finally decided to get out of the station and book an Ola cab. The area outside the Metro station was crowded too. Since no other cabs were available because of high demand, I had to book an Ola Prime that is really pricey. I had to pay Rs 500! Because of the traffic near ITO and Mandi House, the cab took around 20 minutes to reach the pickup point. But I had no other option.

Kavita Singh is a student.

— As told to Shruti Das

‘I waited for 48 minutes for a train’

Every day, I take the Metro to reach office, travelling from Mayur Vihar to Dwarka Sector 12, which takes around an hour. This week, due to the glitch in Metro’s blue line, I had to face a lot of harassment. On December 7, I had to board the 8:15 Metro, but it got cancelled. The one after that also got cancelled. Finally, a Metro arrived after 48 minutes. But again, it was immensely crowded. This problem persisted for days.

The next day, I again had to wait for 20 minutes for the Metro. It hampered my daily routine and I could not reach office on time. We were not given any prior message or warning by the Delhi Metro authorities regarding reasons for the delay. We could have thought of an alternative way to commute, if we would have received some prior information. That day I left at 8 in the morning, and reached office at 10:15.

While returning, I faced the same issue again. Even though announcements were being made that time, but people were still confused. There is a lot of crowd and rush during office hours and this technical snag aggravated the problem. Each Metro was arriving after a gap of 10 minutes — when generally the gap between the arrival of two trains is a maximum of four minutes. So, the crowd kept increasing.

Tarun Kochar is a journalist.

— As told to Shruti Das

A long, tedious journey

I board the Metro from Govindpuri daily and travel to Hasanpur where my office is located. I have to take the violet line then interchange at Mandi House for the blue line. It takes me around 45 minutes to reach office.

Last week, due to some technical snag in the blue line, I had to face several problems. I reached office 30 minutes late. While returning from work, I had to change at Yamuna Bank station. And that train was overcrowded. It was really difficult to travel like that.

Next day too, I changed at Yamuna Bank. Again, it took a lot of time, so I had to leave home half an hour early. But like the previous day, I got late while coming back. This inconvenience hampered my work a lot.

Ankita Dutta is an intern at Vyome Biosciences.

— As told to Shruti Das

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