New Delhi: Over-crowding in Metro trains could ease by the end of next year when the Delhi Metro will start inducting 68 eight-coach trains on its network.

The eight-coach trains, which will be the first of its kind in the country, will ply on the Noida/Vaishali and Gurgaon corridors -- the most crowded lines on the network that now has 185 km of the national capital on its map.

Over-crowding is a major problem on the Delhi Metro which now has a ridership of over 20 lakh and the new age transport system has been taking a number of steps to reduce it like procuring additional coaches.

Once converted into eight-coach, a train can accommodate over 2,400 people per trip. Currently, a six-coach train can accommodate 1,800 passengers, a Delhi Metro spokesman said.

As part of its efforts, the Delhi Metro has placed orders for 212 cars from Mitsubishi-Rotem-Mitsubishi electrical and German train maker Bombardier and the delivery is expected to start in September next year and end in May, 2013.

While Mitsubishi-Rotem-Mitsubishi electrical will provide 136 coaches, Bombardier will supply 76 cars manufactured from its plant in Gujarat's Savli.

The move comes in the middle of Delhi Metro expanding its four-coach trains into six coaches and with the ridership increasing steadily, the organisation decided to further expand them to eight-coach ones.

Thirty-one four coach ROTEM trains on the over-crowded Noida and Vaishali Lines will be converted into eight coach trains, while 37 six-coach Bombardier trains will be expanded into eight-coach ones by May 2013.

"DMRC's effort is to constantly increase its carrying capacity to cater to the requirements of increased ridership and an expanding network," the spokesman said. Delhi Metro stations have been designed in such a way that they can accommodate eight-coach trains and new stations on the Phase-III corridors will be constructed keeping in mind nine-coach trains.

The introduction of eight-coach trains means a lot for commuters as these will ease considerable pressure on the over-crowding problems faced by them.

Delhi Metro is currently in the process of lengthening its four-coach Bombardier trains into six-coach ones and 23 trains have already been inducted into its existing fleet.

Currently, Delhi Metro has a fleet of over 200 trains.

Delhi Metro's ridership has been increasing steadily in the past one year after corridors on the Phase-II project were inaugurated.

The organisation had projected that its ridership would reach 20 lakhs by the end of this year but the figure was achieved last month itself.

(Agencies)