At Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station in south Delhi a pile of parcels big and small greets passengers before traffic congestion wreaks havoc. Catching a train from the station has turned into a nightmare.
The main approach of the station, one of the biggest in the Capital which handles around 3 lakh passengers every day, has the railway parcel loading facility. Loading trucks and DTC buses are parked at the railway parcel facility just outside the station.
Add to this is the encroachment by vendors. On the pavements of the broad road outside the station, illegal food stalls have come up, barely leaving enough space for commuters and vehicles. This in turn affects traffic movement. Unplanned broad road dividers also add to the traffic congestion.
The situation is no better at Sarai Kale Khan Side, the rear entry to the station. Wrongly parked auto rickshaws choke the rear entry, making it difficult for passengers to reach the station. The encroachment and an improper entry and exit plan make the situation worse.
Though at other major Delhi railway stations - New and Old Delhi - encroachments have been removed and a proper traffic moving plan is in place, Hazrat Nizamuddin is still waiting for such arrangements despite being a big station.
"We are aware of all these problems and are taking corrective measures. The planning of the redevelopment of Hazrat Nizamuddin station is underway. We are planning to modernise the station on the lines of New and Old Delhi railway stations," said Ashwani Lohani, Divisional Railway Manager (Delhi Division), northern railway.
In the past couple of years, the New Delhi and old Delhi stations have been completely revamped but very little has changed at the Hazrat Nizamuddin station, which also handles hundreds of trains daily.
"We'll be removing the encroachments to broaden the approach road and a new parcel facility is being constructed within the premises of the station. We are in talks with other civic agencies as well to remove the illegal construction. After that there will be congestion outside the station. The beautification work at the station is already under progress," added Lohani.