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Snag stalls Metro in morning rush hour

Metro services were disrupted for more than an hour on Tuesday morning after a non-AC rake developed a snag, the first since the fare hike on November 7 reduced crowd crush.

Thousands of commuters were stranded as train services were disrupted from 9am to 10.15am.

A jammed axle— a rod that connects a pair of wheels — followed by a power glitch left a train going towards New Garia (Kavi Subhash) stranded at MG Road Road station.

“The wheels were jammed and the train could not move. After the passengers got down, the driver tried to take the train past the crossover point before Central station but had to stop since that could have damaged the wheels,” said a Metro official.

The axle snag was repaired by 9.45am but as the driver tried to start the train, a problem was detected in power supply to three coaches, the official said. “Power supply to the three coaches was cut off and the train was sent to the maintenance yard at New Garia.”

Trains continued to operate between Central and New Garia (Kavi Subhash) stations during the disruption but at a reduced frequency. The ripple effect continued till noon and led to overcrowding.

Santanu Banerjee, a resident of Shyambazar, was late by over an hour and missed an appointment after he had to take a bus to reach office at Everest House near Theatre Road. “I reached Shyambazar station around 9.40am. The electronic signage outside said services were available but when I went down no trains were plying. I could not get a taxi and had to reach office standing on the footboard of a bus,” said Banerjee, who reached office at 11.15am.

Sugato Roy, an assistant manager at a private company, waited for 20 minutes at Park Street Metro station. “I waited at Tollygunge for 10 minutes from 9.51pm and got into a packed train, which kept halting at each subsequent station for five to 10 minutes. Finally when it remained stranded at Netaji Bhawan station for 20 minutes, I stepped out,” he said.