The commissioning of six stations of the East-West Metro at Salt Lake, which was left in the lurch without a nod from the state fire and emergency services department for two stations, is likely to be resolved now, as the department has agreed to provide a provisional clearance of one year for the two Metro stations in question.

The provisional ‘no objection certificate’ valid for one year from the date of issuance, is one of the main documents required for the forthcoming inspection by the Commission of Railway Safety, the successful completion of which will make the six stations of the East-West Metro eligible for final commissioning.

The fire department earlier had refused to give a nod to the two stations at Bengal Chemical and Salt Lake Stadium without an additional emergency exit. The department had also asked Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRC), the implementing agency for the 16km stretch of East-West Metro, to take an undertaking from the state urban development department on the matter relating to the land for the extra exits at the two stations.

The Metro authorities earlier were apprehensive as the inspection by the CRS is expected any day after 15 July. The hurdle in getting a ‘no objection certificate’ for the two stations of Bengal Chemical and Salt Lake Stadium would have resulted in obstructions in getting a nod by the CRS officials. This could also lead to commissioning of services at only four stations instead of six while cutting down the planned services to around 3.5 km from five km.

The news of the provisional NOC for one year has come as a blessing for the metro authorities who are taking a sigh of relief while putting in all their efforts for the forthcoming CRS inspection. The decision was taken during a meeting between the officials of KMRC, ministers of fire department and urban development department last Friday. “It was agreed in the meeting that we will get a provisional NOC for the two stations which is yet to be received,” said a KMRC official. “We have also submitted the documents to the urban development department and a call for joint inspection is awaited,” he added.

Sources in Metro Railway also said that the CRS inspection which was expected to be conducted after 15 July or tentatively 18 July onwards, might be delayed by two to three days as preparation of documents, including provisional NOC, is expected to take some time.