New Delhi, Aug 23 (PTI) Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said that Metro train services in Delhi should be resumed in a phased manner as the COVID-19 situation was improving in the city and hoped the Centre would soon take a decision on it.
Interacting with traders, entrepreneurs and businessmen in the city in a 'Digital Samvad', the chief minister also said his government was considering launching a website for goods that are manufactured and traded in Delhi to attract buyers from across the globe.
He said markets and roads in the national capital would be beautified on the lines of the Chandni Chowk redevelopment project, which is expected to be completed by November-December.
'I have requested the Centre that Delhi should be treated differently. Corona situation is improving in Delhi. If they do not want to run Metro trains in other cities, let it be so. But, in Delhi Metro train services should be started in a phased manner, on a trial basis. We have raised this issue before the Centre many times, I hope the Centre will soon take a decision in this regard,' he said.
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation said in a statement that it will implement coronavirus-related guidelines and commence operations whenever directed by the government.
'All necessary guidelines in place to combat the spread of the Covid-19 virus shall be implemented and all efforts shall be made to make travel safe for our value commuters,' the statement said.
The chief minister highlighted various steps taken by his government to revive the pandemic-hit economy of the city and said it would make some big announcements about the industry sector in coming days.
Kejriwal also assured the traders that anomalies in circle rates in some areas would be addressed.
'One suggestion that I received was that just like the job portal ('Rozgar Bazar'), we should launch a portal of industries and shops. Through this portal, Delhi's wholesale market and industries can put their products before the whole world and they can receive orders from the whole world. We can call it 'Delhi Bazaar' where the people can market their products,' he said.
'Delhi government to launch online 'Delhi Bazar' for traders. The whole world will know what goods are manufactured or sold in Delhi,' a government statement later said quoting the chief minister.
Kejriwal reiterated that in the last five years, the people of Delhi have collectively overcome many challenges and they will also overcome the challenge of economic revival of Delhi by working together in this hour of need.
'The last 5-6 months have been very tough for us. The whole country and the whole world is suffering from the corona pandemic. On one hand, the most important thing is to control corona and save the people and ensure there are no deaths and on the other hand, what is important is getting Delhi's economy back on track, which has dismantled because of no jobs, no businesses, and no trade due to corona lockdown,' he said.
He also said Delhi did not have to reimpose lockdown like many other states.
'I am happy that the corona situation in Delhi is under control. The situation was a bit worrisome in the month of June for 15-20 days, but now, with the efforts of the two crore people of Delhi, help of the Centre, religious and social organisations, the situation is under control.
'There was a rise in the number of cases for 15-20 days since June 1 after the lockdown was lifted, but we did not impose the lockdown again. Probably, Delhi is the only city where lockdown hasn't been imposed again, as we understand work, and COVID management can go hand-in-hand,' he said.
Talking about the suggestions received by him, Kejriwal said that some people faced problems in getting loans under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Yojana, and his government will work it out in consultation with banks.
The virtual meeting was attended by more than 215 traders of Delhi from sectors like manufacturing, electronics, garments and automobiles, said Vice Chairperson, Dialogue & Development Commission of Delhi, Jasmine Shah.
The interaction was moderated by national convenor of Chamber of Trade & Industries (CTI) Brajesh Goel.
The meeting was attended by representatives from all the major markets in Delhi including Chandni Chowk, Sadar Bazar, Chawdi Bazar, Khari Baoli, Kashmiri Gate, Karol Bagh, Connaught Place, Lajpat Nagar, Khan Market, and South Extension.
Harshvardhan Bansal, chairman of Unity Group raised the issue of circle rate anomalies seeking the chief minister's help to fix it. President of South Ex Market Vijay Kumar demanded resuming Metro train services.
'Metro Rail service should be started soon. There is a lot of problem in the movement of people. The Metro is used both by the customers and employees. The staff is finding it difficult to commute on daily basis,' he said.
Meenakshi Dutt, a salon owner, suggested for an exclusive cell for women entrepreneurs to be opened by the Delhi government to redress their grievances and provide them infirmation about various schemes for them.
The representatives from marble and automobile parts industry suggested for opening separate hubs for them in the city to attract customers in large numbers. PTI VIT SMN SMN