E Sreedharan, popularly known as the Metro Man, is a retired officer of the Indian Engineering Service and an advisor to several Metro projects in India.
Sreedharan is well known for his work in transforming public transport sector in India, particularly his work with Delhi Metro. Sreedharan, who was born in 1932 in Karukaputhur (now in Kerala) has received several honours for his work in the field of transportation.
In 2001, he was conferred with the prestigious Padma Shri in 2001 and was later honoured with Padma Vibhushan in 2008. In 2005, he received the French government’s Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur.
He pursued his higher education at the Victoria College in Palghat. Afterwards, Sreedharan completed a degree in civil engineering from the Government Engineering College, known now as JNTUK, in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh.
He headed the Konkan Railway project – one of the most most difficult railway projects in the world. He went on to take up the task of developing the Delhi Metro project. Under his leadership, the Delhi Metro met its targets way before time.
In the 2010s Sreedharan took advisory roles in Kochi Metro, Jaipur Metro, Coimbatore Metro , Lucknow Metro, two mass rapid transit corporations in Jammu & Kashmir – Jammu Mass Rapid Transit Corp and the Srinagar Mass Rapid Transit Corp.
Sreedharan was also appointed by the former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to serve on the UN High Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport (HLAG-ST) for a period of three years in 2015.
During the national railway strike in 1974, which went on for 20 days by 1.7 million workers (perhaps the largest strike to hit Indian Railways till date) Sreedharan was busy designing a Metro rail network in Calcutta (now Kolkata) and hence refused to halt his work.