The Western Railway (WR) on Thursday halted the process of removal of luggage racks in suburban local trains after receiving complaints of inconvenience from commuters. As of now, luggage racks from eleven 9-car trains have already been removed.
"We have now decided to stop the removal of luggage racks from the coaches as we received a number of complaints from passengers. The racks that have been removed will now be reinstalled slowly, but no more racks would now be removed," WR Mumbai's divisional railway manager Satya Prakash said.
"Removal of luggage racks was one of the suggestions given by the security agencies following the 11/7 blasts. It had been found that the bombers had placed explosive devices on the luggage racks crowded suburban trains, which set off a chain of blasts killing more than 190 people," he said.
Sources said initially, the WR had removed racks from two trains on an experimental basis, but officials in the car-shed went head with removal of more racks due to lack of communication.
Passenger associations have welcomed the move. "Luggage racks in Mumbai's suburban trains are absolutely essential. If they are not provided, it becomes problem during the peak hours. With no racks, commuters tend to keep luggage on the floor and it occupies more space than taken for a commuter to stand, Dr Shailendra Garg, vice -president of Passenger and Traffic Relief Association and five-time member of zonal railway users consultative committee.