The Prime Minister inaugurated India’s first underwater Metro on the Howrah Maidan-Esplanade section of the Kolkata Metro, connecting the twin cities of Kolkata and Howrah. 

Key Highlights

• The Howrah Maidan-Esplanade section, which passes below the mighty Hooghly River has the first transportation tunnel under a river in India. 

o The tunnel is 13 metres below the riverbed and 33 metres below ground level. 

• The 4.8-km Howrah Maidan- Esplanade section is a part of the East-West Corridor and has been built at a cost of ₹4,960 crore. 

• It is India’s first venture into underwater metro services, with the deepest metro station in the country at the Howrah Metro Station (30 m deep). 


  • A metro train is expected to traverse the 520-metre stretch under the river in just 45 seconds. It would also benefit people coming from Hooghly, Howrah and Medinipur.
  • The stretch between Howrah Maidan and Esplanade is the second section of the corridor in which commercial operations will begin. With this, only the Esplanade-Sealdah stretch of the line is left to be completed.
  • These sections will help decongest road traffic and provide seamless, easy and comfortable connectivity. 


  • British Connection: The idea of having an underwater transportation system on the lines of London was first mooted by the British in 1921. But the idea was shelved after failed soil tests. 
  • Project Delay: The project suffered delays owing to an aquifer burst at Bowbazar in Central Kolkata in August 2019, leading to severe ground subsidence, the collapse of several buildings there and two more water leakage in 2022 during tunnelling and construction work. 

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