Exclusive Interview with Shri Kumar Keshav , Managing Director , Lucknow Metro Rail Corporation

Shri Kumar Keshav

Managing Director, Lucknow Metro Rail Corporation

Shri Kumar Keshav, an IRSE (Indian Railway Service of Engineers) officer and a gold-medallist engineer from IIT- Kanpur (M.Tech) and IIT-Roorkee (B.E.), took over as Managing Director of the company on 18th August, 2014. As Director (Projects & Planning) at Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), he is credited with successfully completing and commissioning various projects in Delhi Metro.

As regards the Lucknow Metro Project, it is a dream which is being realised by him. Lucknow Metro is a dream project of the people of Uttar Pradesh which is being executed by Metro engineers under the leadership of Shri Kumar Keshav. Work for this project is going-on day and night without any break with the Managing Director leaving no stone unturned to see that the 8.5 km priority Metro corridor is commissioned for trial runs on 1st December, 2016 in just two years and two month period which is a record in itself, thereby achieving the distinction of being the fastest ever Metro project execution that has ever happened in the Country as stated by ‘Metro Man’ Dr. E. Sreedharan.

Rail Analysis : Please tell us about the future corridors and your upcoming stretch of Lucknow Metro Rail Corporation ?

Shri Kumar Keshav : The LMRC has made operational the 22.878-km-long stretch of NorthSouth corridor (Phase 1A) at Lucknow from CCS Airport to Munsipulia much ahead of the initial deadline of April 2019. Now we are focusing on Kanpur Metro and Agra Metro which are approved by the Central Government. We have submitted the revised DPR of Lucknow Metro (East-West corridor) to the government of Uttar Pradesh and it is yet to be approved. The 11.098 km long East-West Corridor at Lucknow which will connect from Charbagh to Vasant Kunj. The corridor will have 12 stations – Charbagh, Gautam Buddha Marg, Aminabad, Pandeya Ganj, Lucknow City Railway Station, Medical Chauraha, Nawabganj, Thakurganj, Balaganj, Sarfarazganj, Musa bagh and Vasant Kunj.

Rail Analysis : What is the role of LMRC in Meerut Metro, Agra Metro and other metro projects in State?

Shri Kumar Keshav : LMRC is now a role model for other Metros that shall be coming up in the city of Kanpur, Agra, Varanasi, Allahabad, Gorakhpur and Meerut in near future. Lucknow Metro has now ushered a revolution in bringing Mass Rapid Transit System in important cities of Uttar Pradesh. The Govt. of U.P. had nominated LMRC as a agency for implementation of various metro projects in Uttar Pradesh and Kanpur and Agra Metro Projects is already approved by the Central Government and other Metro Project are in process.

Transit-oriented development (TOD) in Lucknow Metro

Rail Analysis : Please tell us more about Transit-oriented development (TOD) in Lucknow Metro?

Shri Kumar Keshav : Transit-oriented development helps in creating a sustainable and inclusive system by providing easy access to resources and opportunities. An integrated rail system having seamless integration with other mass public transports is a key to this. Further, support by feeder buses and easy walking or cycling connections are also desired. The North-South corridor (Phase 1A) has been connected to the airport, railway station and bus station while the East-West corridor will extend the connectivity to the other parts of the Lucknow City.

Rail Analysis : How much budget was allocated to LMRC and how do you plan to spend it?

Shri Kumar Keshav : According to the Detailed Project Report (DPR), the completion cost of the 23 km long Lucknow Metro’s Phase 1A (North – South Corridor) was expected at Rs 6, 880 crore. This cost was funded by equity contributions from the Central Govt. and the State Govt. in equal proportions with an external loan of Rs. 3,502 crore from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Till now, LMRC has received Rs 6,851.80crore from the Government for completing the Phase 1A (North – South Corridor).These fund was used judiciously for completing the project in the city.

We have been able to complete the project in a record time ahead of schedule and well within sanctioned cost.

LMRC signs MoU with Nagar Nigam Lucknow

Rail Analysis : Please inform us about your initiatives for Last mile connectivity ?

Shri Kumar Keshav : Last mile connectivity is one of the top priorities and in this direction we have been working with state authorities. We are in process to sign MoU with Urban Mass Transit Company (UMTC) and UBER Company to meet the demand from Metro commuters for feeder services across the city. LMRC has also planned to hire E-rickshaws as feeder services because of their benefits to the environment. We have also been providing parking facilities at most of the stations in order to provide people with park and ride facility.

LMRC ties up with HDFC Bank to provide passengers with GoSmart Card

Rail Analysis : Any other initiative of LMRC that you would like to share with us?

Shri Kumar Keshav : We have recently tied up with HDFC Bank to provide our passengers with GoSmart Card. The HDFC Bank facility has enabled customers of all banks to purchase metro tokens and prepaid cards easily by making it cashless. With the tie-up, the LMRC has made it convenient for commuters to purchase token, reload prepaid GoSmart cards using any debit card, credit card, or net banking facility, on the website of Lucknow Metro. Passengers using the GoSmart cards are getting facilities like free WiFi, hassle-free travel as well as freedom from standing in queues with online recharge facility.

Lucknow Metro joined hands with Lucknow Municipal Corporation for providing the payment facility to the GoSmart card users through which passengers can use their “GoSmart Card” to make payments for the property tax at ticket counters (TOMs). Same kind of MoU had also signed between LMRC and BSNL for facilitation of customer services where the GoSmart card of Lucknow Metro shall be used for the payment of BSNL post-paid mobile bills along with the purchase of pre-paid products at the Ticket Office Machine (TOM) counters at all the Metro stations.

Rail Analysis : Lastly, congratulations for winning the award at Rail Analysis Innovation and Excellence summit 2019. What are your views and feedback about the same?

Shri Kumar Keshav : It’s an honour not only to the whole team of LMRC, our GeneralConsultants, Contractors, Vendors and the construction work-force in implementing this world-class infrastructure project in a record time, it is pride for the people of Lucknow. The LMRC is a new metro system in India and it has achieved national as well as international recognition in a very short span of time. Awards like these foster a sense of pride and responsibility besides encouraging the company to go for new challenges and initiatives.

Winning the Award at Rail Analysis Innovation and Excellence Summit 2019

This interview shall be covered in our June 2019 Edition Magazine. Click Here to advertise in the magazine or know more on the same .

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