The 7.14 a.m Delhi Metro-Tales of The Train

The digital clock at the Sector 13 Metro station in Dwarka , Delhi, turns 7.14 a.m and in purrs the Metro.There is a polite BHAWNN,a hooter from the driver as it customarily warns the waiting commuters to get behind the yellow band on the platform.

All the doors open simultaneously and I just walk in, looking for a vacant seat.Though , it is early morning, there is a sizeable crowd consisting of young ladies, dressed in their fashionable best, and some middle aged office goers.The seats are quickly filled and the train-India’s probably most trusted brand- pulls out of the station.

I have been using the Metro daily for the past 6 months for my daily commute and it just fascinates me the way it has transformed an average Indian’s approach towards public property.But, equally amazing is to note the patterns of commuter behavior on the different lines of the Metro- Blue, Yellow, Red, Violet.Each line ferries a different set of people in their mannerisms, age profiles and socio-economic backgrounds.

I take the Blue line and you simply find it difficult to speak with the guy/girl sitting next with the earphones dangling out feeding music from the mobile.Self contained universe.Stoned.In one’s own island.Mostly the traffic is young,software professionals going to work in Noida, UP’s answer to Haryana’s Gurgaon.

Sometimes you grab a valuable nugget of information from the first time employees- starting salary of Rs. 17, 000 for Comp Sc graduates.

And then there are the cupid struck ones- young ones holding hands, apparently oblivious to the surrounding mass of people ,which too is trying hard to ignore the lovers.The lips are just an inch away, the groin area is just grazing each other and the shampooed hair of hers is just blowing into the face of her serenador.Perks of being a Metro commuter, you chuckle to yourself.

A 40 something sardarji is just kind of dangling to the overhead burnished steel railings in the cabin.He is happy in his thoughts..whats he thinking, you wonder? And then you see it..the fly is open..unzipped..;))I cant do much beyond clearing my throat and trying to catch his attention.But, then, who cares!

Happily for the old and disabled commuters, the general public stays off the seats reserved for the elderly.An unwritten rule followed by the people.But, then I also wonder;how come you see very few ladies sporting a plaster.?

IN CONTRAST,the Red Fort line carries happy and boisterous passengers;the uncle jis, aunties and pairee pauna crowd.Little formality.Life is cheerful and every one is eager to help almost everyone else.Prasads are exchanged most generously and so is the advice to young girls putting on shockingly short and tight dresses.Girls dont mind all this.

This, in short is the Delhi Metro microcosm.And I am trying to make sense of it, daily.