Considering the passenger shift to the north side of the city, Mohd Jamshed, railway board (traffic) member, directed the Western Railway (WR), Mumbai division, to increase the suburban services where passenger footfall has gone up.
For 35 lakh WR commuters, this means more services to Vasai, Virar and Dahanu from Andheri station which sees the highest passenger footfall.
On October 26, Jamshed inspected Churchgate station and travelled from here to Andheri in the second class compartment of a Borivali-bound fast train.
During the journey, he also interacted with passengers about their concerns.
The senior railway official examined the station-wise data of passenger growth for the last few years, which indicates the growing ticket sales at emerging business centres such as Bandra, Andheri and Malad-Goregaon.
“The statistics show that footfall at Churchgate has reduced, while Santacruz and Andheri have seen a rise in the ticket sales. This indicates that more passengers are commuting to the north. The construction of the third and fourth lines between Virar and Dahanu will help to cater this section better,” said Jamshed.
Hindustan Times had reported on the passenger growth at Andheri, Malad–Goregaon and residential hubs like Borivali, Vasai and Virar on September 13.
Following which, the WR curtailed some Churchgate-Bandra trains and added more services between Virar and other stations such as Andheri, Borivli and Bandra.
“Considering the passenger shift, he (Jamshed) has directed us to serve the section better where the passenger increase has been noticed. He also enquired about the infrastructure projects,” said Mukul Jain, divisional railway manager, Mumbai division, WR.
Jamshed was in the city to review a biannual meeting with chief commercial managers from all 16 zones of Indian railways and other chiefs of public sector undertakings.
In the meeting of all zonal railways, the officials discussed ways to improve passenger amenities, redevelope stations and increase the non-fare revenues.