Initiatives to provide facilities for elderly people at Indore railway station, such as battery-operated cars and escalators, have failed to take off.
Even though Railways had sanctioned funds for escalators in the 2013 budget, the project is lying in the cold storage. Sources say that the project to install escalators at Indore railway station will take at least a year to materialize.
For elderly people, walking on the platform is more troublesome than the actual journey. At present, after arrival of a train, the two over-bridges get congested for 10 to 15 minutes making it very difficult for elderly people to exit the station. Boarding the train is also not easy as the stairs are steep. Even handicapped people have to take the stairway in absence of escalators.
People have to walk all the way through the long platform and cross over the bridge to reach and walk the other platform. There is also a need for battery-operated cars to ferry senior citizens. Also, there are no wheelchair ramps along with the stairs.
According to announcement made in last railway budget, Indore railway station was to get four escalators, Ratlam station two escalators and six other railway stations under the Ratlam rail division will have one escalator each.
Earlier, Ratlam Rail Board had decided to build three lifts at the Indore railway station. The three lifts were proposed to be built near the foot over-bridge. The lifts were to help the elderly, handicapped and women commuters.
Railway officials say that wheelchairs and stretchers are available at the station for the disabled and ill. However, the project to install battery operated cars could not materialize due to lack of sponsors. The escalators are likely to be installed only during the renovation of the Indore railway station.