Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday flagged off India’s first driverless train on Delhi Metro’s Magenta Line. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was also present at the virtual launch event.

Modi said the development showed that India was quickly moving towards smart systems. “Nearly three years ago, I had the honour of inaugurating the Magenta Line,” Modi said. “Today, again, I got the opportunity to inaugurate the country’s first automatic train on this route.”

The prime minister said that the government will continue to expand the country’s metro network. “In 2014, only five cities had metro,” Modi said. “Today metro train facility is present in 18 cities. “By 2025, we will take the service to more than 25 cities.”

Modi said that it was his government that introduced a metro-specific policy in the country. “We didn’t take urbanisation as a challenge, but as an opportunity,” Modi said. “There was no policy associated with metro railways in our country. Our government formulated a specific policy related to metro and implemented it with four-pronged vision.”

The prime minister added that the Delhi Metro had become a part of “seven per cent of world’s Metro networks” which can function without drivers, Hindustan Times reported. The government also plans to introduce the driverless train services on the Delhi Metro’s Pink Line by mid-2021, PTI reported.

Modi also launched the National Common Mobility Card service on the Airport Express Line via video conferencing. It will allow anyone carrying a RuPay debit card to travel on the route.