Tuesday’s downpour threw the suburban railway network, Mumbai’s lifeline, completely out of gear. It also washed away all the tall claims made by the railways’ administration.
Lakhs of commuters had a harrowing time as they stayed stuck in immobile trains on the Central Railway’s (CR’s) main line and the Harbour line for over four hours.
“I was stuck in a train for three hours between Vikhroli and Ghatkopar stations. I tried to get off, but there was so much water on the tracks that I got in again,” said 31-year-old software executive Shikha Naik.
“I eventually caught a long-distance train and came to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), but it took me five hours from Kalyan to CST.”
“There was heavy waterlogging near Kurla which caused all the problems. The water level rose to over 9 inches, throwing
services out of gear,” said Shriniwas Mudgerikar, chief spokesperson, CR.
While 120 trains on the main line and 110 trains on Harbour line were cancelled, eight outstation trains were rescheduled.
While main line services were slow between CST-Dadar, Harbour line services ran only between CST-Bandra.
But as the evening peak hour crowd swelled at CST, CR allowed commuters to board outstation trains, which halted at local stations. At 5.30 pm, services on both lines resumed.
While Western Railway (WR) trains were delayed by over 30 minutes, they did not halt.
Due to waterlogging between Charni Road and Grant Road stations between 9 am and 11 am, services were delayed by about 30 minutes. Over 30 trains were cancelled.
After 1 pm, the delay stretched to 45 minutes as water started accumulating on tracks at Bandra and Vile Parle.
“The trains are so slow. At this rate, I will reach my Lower Parel office at night,” said Anita Rao, who was waiting for a train for over an hour at Borivli station. Services on the western line normalised by 5 pm.