from Ancy Paladka
for Daijiworld Media Network – Mumbai (SM)
Mumbai, Dec 11: Thirty lac train commuters belonging to Dahisar,Mira Road, Bhayandar, Vasai, Nallasopara and Virar staged a protest in a special manner by not traveling on trains, demanding trains every five minutes, on Monday December 10.
All the trains moved without a single passenger. Commuters were shouting slogans and picketing the stations. There was no one to buy tickets in any of the ticket counters. Only the cops were seen walking on the platforms.
The protest was called by sixty organizations under the banner of Pravas Adhikar Andolan Samiti. The agitators gathered outside the stations, demanded better frequency of trains in Borivili-Virar belt. They urged for a Virar train every five minutes instead of 15 minutes gap. They were seen requesting the commuters to stay away from train travel for a day.
The agitators were not satisfied with the negligible increase of train services. They said that the Virar locals will continue as torture chambers for many generations to come. The railway authorities should acknowledge the fact that passenger traffic in Andheri-Virar sector is much more than Andheri-Church Gate sector. Logically their demand is that the Andheri-Virar train frequency should be more. Their suggestions are to speed up rakes procurement and to give preference to Virar sector in allotting the rakes and also to convert all Bandra-Churchgate services and some Andheri-Church Gate services to Virar locals.
As per Railways own estimate, in peak hours of trains 16-17 people are compelled to huddle together in one square meter of floor space for an hour or more. It is misery forced on millions of people by ruling establishments which does not care for the safety, health and dignity of citizens.