United Nations has certified Delhi Metro Rail Corporation as the first metro rail and rail-based system in the world to get "carbon credits for reducing greenhouse gas emissions" and helping in reducing pollution levels in the city by 630,000 tons every year. And believe me, people, this is not some hoax like the one about our National Anthem being declared as the "best National Anthem" in the world. This is a fact. Another fact, the Konkan Railways cover 760 kilometers with 93 tunnels and 150 bridges and was completed in record time.
But why are we discussing our railways and metro today? Because these were some of the largest public sector construction projects that were completed on or before schedule. Sadly, a feat which is still deemed as a miracle in our country. So, what was the driving force behind these achievements? If I had to introduce him, I would just say, Mr. E. Sreedharan. Yes, the Metro Man. The title of Metro Man was associated with him only after the completion of Delhi Metro. But he was achieving some engineering marvels from a long time in his career already.
In 1964, he was put to execute the repairing work of Pamban Bridge which was washed away in a cyclone. He was given three months, but the bridge was repaired within 46 days. He was awarded the Railway Minister's award for this achievement. He was the man who designed and implemented the first ever metro of our country the Kolkata Metro. He retired in June 1990. But this was just the beginning for him. He was called by the Government on contract for the Konkan Railway Project. And guess what, a project which was the first major Build Operate and Transfer project of the country was completed without time overruns. Then came the much-appreciated project of Delhi Metro. A project which is considered to be an engineering marvel because of all the complexities and the state of the art features it has managed to incorporate. He worked for 16 years on this project and made sure that each phase of the metro gets completed on or before the schedule. After retiring from the DMRC, he worked for Kochi Metro, as Principal Advisor. He also advised or is advising Lucknow Metro and Jaipur Metro. He was awarded by France with Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur, the highest French Order for Civil and Military merits.
A man of sheer genius and strong work ethics. An engineer whose vision changed the transportation habits of millions of Indians. He along with his team changed the way Delhi commutes. All this after he was retired from his job. A person who has given exemplary service to his country should be given his due credit. Not many may know him. But he is a true legend. We recognized the achievements of Mr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, it is high time we recognized the achievements of this great engineer. Instead of having a President from a political background, why can't we have a President from the bureaucracy. A man who never allowed any kind of political pressure to come in the way of his working style. Let's see if he can be the first man of our country. Let's root for him. Mr. Sridharan For President.