Kochi: Amusement and bewilderment gave way to joy as Kochiites got the first taste of a metro ride early on Monday morning, when the Kochi Metro was thrown open to the public.
Though there were repeated announcements about getting the tickets and proceeding to the elevated rail corridor, many passengers, who were getting a feel of the metro for the first time, seemed confused about the whole process.
Kochi Metro's dream run begins overriding hartal concerns | Pix, video
KMRL staff present in Palarivattom station, where the first ride for passengers began, were on their toes to assist the commuters.
The overwhelming urge to indulge in selfies first by amused locals did not help the cause either.
Only one ticket counter functioned at Palarivattom station till 6:30 am. The KMRL started giving tickets at 5:45 am.
There after three more counters were opened, easing the queues. The KMRL staffers then explained to wary commuters how to unlock the automated gates using the bar code in the ticket.
But then even after overcoming the first hazard, selfie enthusiasts were stuck at various points of the swanky station.
They were more eager to post it on social media platforms rather than proceeding to the platform to board the three-coach train.
The KMRL staff also had a tough time controlling the crowds who crossed the yellow line to take the pictures and videos of the train.
Those who managed to board the 6 am train were also busy sharing their sense of achievement to their relatives and friends through mobile phones.
Kannur to Kochi - for a metro ride
Many who took the first train to Aluva were from faraway places. Like, Abdurahman from Kannur. He had come to Thrissur for a wedding when he thought of having a metro ride.
After sleeping overnight at Ernakulam railway station, the football enthusiast who has associated himself with teams like Viva Kerala and FC Kochi, was able to take a ride in the first train itself.
Abdurahiman wore a jacket that read 'Welcome to Kochi Metro'.
He also delighted his fellow commuters with his footballing skills inside the coach.
Abdurahiman would go back Monday to his native place, after etching his name in the history of Kochi Metro.
But the metro services will carry on from 6 am to 10 pm, ferrying commuters in all the 11 stations at every ninth minute.
Kochiites would now await the completion of the metro at least till Maharaja's, which authorities hope to complete in a year's time.
The metro's first phase was initially conceived between Aluva to Petta. That should take two years.