The number of passengers booked and penalised for littering and spitting on the station premises has increased multi-fold compared to last year.
More than 19,000 suburban commuters on Western Railway (WR) were booked for littering and spitting on the railway premises in the past six months from June to November. Fines totaling Rs18.34 lakh have been collected.
Last year, 6,242 were booked for the same offence in the corresponding period and Rs5.03 lakh collected in fines.
Around 35 lakh commuters travel on Western Railway every day.
However, even after an increase in number of cases, railway activists said the action is not enough because the effect is not visible on the field. They complained that the number of anti-littering cases registered at stations is much lesser compared to the number of passengers using the stations.
“Railway officials should conduct more stringent action. Commuters not only at stations but even those littering in trains or throwing garbage on tracks should be penalised,” said Kailash Verma, Zonal Railway Users’ Consultative Committee (ZRUCC) member, Western Railway.
On an average, 13 passengers had been booked at Andheri every day. The station sees 6 lakh commuters every day.
Nine had been booked at Churchgate and Dadar railway stations every day in the past six months. Every day, Churchgate sees 5.05lakh commuters and Dadar 2.86 lakh.
“We have proposed an increase in the fine amount from Rs100 to Rs500. The rules should be made simpler so that employees, other than ticket checking staff, can penalise offenders. Once it is approved, we would be able to intensify the drive,” said Ravindra Bhakar, chief public relations officer, Western Railway.