Good news for commuters from Diva as 24 fast locals (12 in each direction) have started halting at Diva from Sunday. Monday is the first working day after the introduction of this facility at Diva and people gave mixed response with most demanding an increase in frequency and trains that originate from Diva.
The decision will give big relief to Diva locals, who have been demanding that fast trains halt at their station and trains originate from Diva for the last 10 years.
The first Karjat-bound local train leaving CST at 6.10 am will arrive at Diva at 6.57 am while CST-bound Karjat local leaving Karjat at 5.53 am will arrive at Diva at 6.55am.
The Central Railway officials said, “On account of additional halt all the fast-local trains will arrive at the destination two minutes behind the schedule.”
Adesh Bhagat of Diva Railway Passengers’ Association said, “Although it comes as a good news for commuters, but it would not be much helpful as the fast trains are already full at Dombivli and people at Diva will hardly get any space to even enter the coach. Moreover, it will increase the risk of accidents as people would stand at footboards and accidents due to falling from the train may increase.”
Bhagat said including outstation commuters and also local ones, nearly a lakh commute from Diva station. “During peak hours, only three fast locals would be available which won’t be of much help. However, the down fast local will be helpful as it will originate from CST only. CR officials should look at introducing trains starting from Diva which will be a big relief for Mumbra and Kalwa commuters as well. In fact, if frequency of trains is increased it would be of some help definitely,” added Bhagat.
The CR officials expressed inability to start trains originating from Diva as it is not a terminus and decision might be taken once the work of 5th and 6th line is completed. Despite many assurances, the work of 5th and 6th line pegged at nearly Rs135 crore has yet not been completed and officials said they will complete the work in early 2017.
Shreemant Mane, 45, a Diva resident, said, “Though this is a good start but I don’t know how much helpful it would be as my today’s experience was not so good. I could not board the fast train and eventually I had to board a slow train only. The fast train that arrived at 9.09 am in morning was fully occupied and It would be a big relief if trains originate from Diva.”
Sharad Satam, 37, a Diva resident, said “It was the first weekday of the first train halting at Diva. I left one fast local to board the second one, the introduction of fast trains has definitely reduced travel time but CR should look at increasing the frequency for increased mobility.”