Forced to cross tracks as bridges shut for repair | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Forced to cross tracks as bridges shut for repair

mumbai Updated: Jul 30, 2010 01:16 IST
Shashank Rao

It was a wake-up call for the municipal corporation officials after a portion of the foot overbridge in Santacruz dangled dangerously over the railway tracks.

Three days after the incident, the Western Railway (WR) and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) have shut the foot overbridges at Andheri, Borivli and Santacruz, for maintenance.

Sources said the maintenance work will take at least 10 days to repair the foot overbridges.

But this has inconvenienced those who don’t travel by trains but want to go from east to west. They are now forced to cross the tracks or use the railway bridges, hoping not to get caught by the ticket collectors.

The Mumbai Railway Passengers Association will meet the railway officials at Andheri asking them to allow people to use their FOBs without being harassed by the TCs. The fine for using the railway overbridges without a ticket is Rs 264.

“We will have a meeting with the railway officials at Andheri and they don’t agree to our demands, we will hold a protest,” said Kailash Verma, member of MRPA.

“We got complaints from people who were caught by the TCs for using railway overbridges.” The situation has deteriorated as people have decided to go on agitation if their meeting with the railway officials at Andheri fails on Friday. On Tuesday, the WR started a campaign against trespassing by sending SMSes to public.

“We will consider allowing non-commuters to use the main railway FOB, if BMC asks us for it,” said WR chief PRO, S. Gupta.

For the last three days, ticket collectors at Andheri, Borivli and Santacruz have been fining more than their target of 10 trespassers a day. WR sources said they will ask the station managers at all three stations to remove TCs from the railway FOB that is next to the public FOB.

This will mean TCs will stand on platforms and people can use the FOB to cross from east to west. “But this doesn’t mean the BMC takes maintenance of public FOBs lightly as we don’t want to make it a habit for people without tickets to use our FOBs on regularly,” said the WR official.