Kite thread (manjha) disrupted Metro services on Sunday yet again, with commuters of the Red Line (between Rithala and New Bus Adda) de-boarding at the Seelampur station after a loud noise was heard from the train, followed by minor sparks witnessed from the overheard electrification (OHE).
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) said that at 4.35pm, the ‘pantograph’ of the train — the apparatus mounted on the roof of electric trains touching the OHE — had “minor sparks”. Officials said this was caused by a manjha hitting the OHE.
“There was minor flashing observed on the pantograph of the train approaching the Seelampur platform on the Red Line. This was probably due to some external object, which prima facie seems like a kite thread, hitting the OHE or the pantograph,” a statement issued by the DMRC on Sunday read.
A senior Metro official explained that though such flashing (sparks) is not unusual when an external object comes in contact with the electrification system, the incidents of kite threads disrupting Metro services is on the rise.
On Sunday, train services were resumed after precautionary checks carried out by the station staff, officials said.
Commuters travelling in the train said that when the noise was heard, the train stopped within seconds at the Seelampur station, where it was halted for nearly 15 minutes.
“It was only after 5.15pm that trains on the line resumed. We were all just cluelessly standing at the station ,” said Sumukhi Sudheesh, a passenger in the train.
The DMRC said that despite regular advisories requesting people to not fly kites around stations, the problem persists. “Apart from causing technical problems, people can also endanger their own safety,” a DMRC spokesperson said.