KOCHI: Union Minister of State (MoS) for Electronics and IT Alphons Kannanthanam on Saturday morning travelled on the Kochi Metro from Maharajas station to JLN stadium to get a feel of the riding experience on board the country’s latest Metro service.Interestingly, Kannantham didn’t have a phalanx of security guards, with just two of his relatives and BJP Ernakulam district general secretary K S Shaiju and the party’s Ernakulam Assembly president C G Rajagopal accompanying him on the journey.
“It is important for a city to have a fine public transport system for tourism growth and Kochi Metro has made it. The ride on Kochi Metro was a great experience in every sense and Kochi Metro appears to be even better than the Delhi Metro. Kochi Metro has been designed thoughtfully as it factors in all sections of the society, especially, those need special consideration,’’ he said.
Earlier, Kannantham who reached Maharaja’s College station around 9.40 am purchased the tickets himself. He also underwent the security check mandatory for all Metro riders. Though the ticket was valid for the journey till Palarivattom, Kannanthanam got down at the Stadium Station.
Despite his VVIP status, Kannanthanam warmly greeted fellow passengers and even the Metro staffers. He also interacted freely with the riders on board the Metro and sportingly posed for a selfie with them. Since it was morning , nearly all the seats were occupied. Though a few of the commuters offered their seats, Kannanthanam politely declined. However, he later accepted the offer.
After completing the Metro ride Kannanthanam visited the Ernakulam boat jetty where he listened to the grievances of passengers. Since it was a surprise visit, the jetty and its premises remained dirty. The staff was not able to give a satisfactory answer to the minister when he asked the reason for the sorry state of affairs.