Boarding or alighting at nine suburban stations on the Central Railway (CR) may soon get easier, as the administration has expedited the work of raising the height of the 17 platforms at these stations to 900mm to complete it by March 31.
The Bombay high court (HC) had directed the CR to raise the height of 24 platforms on 15 stations by May 2015. While the work at nine stations -- Kanjurmarg, Thane, Ambernath, Shelu, Kasara, Sandhurst Road, Cotton Green, Reay Road and Vithhalwadi stations -- is in progress, the work at some of the platforms at Chembur, Vikhroli, Ghatkopar and Kopar has been completed. The work at Kurla and Dadar will be commissioned soon. The officials expect to complete the work on all 24 platforms on the CR, barring Kurla and Dadar, by March 31.
In January 2014, Monica More, 16, lost her arms after she fell into a pit at Ghatkopar station. A few days later, Jiyarul Shaikh, 21, died after he fell on the tracks through the gap at Andheri station. Following the series of accidents because of the large gaps between the footboard of trains and platforms, the HC appointed a committee to study the raising of platforms on suburban stations. The committee suggested the railways raise the platform height from 820mm to 900mm, as it will allow commuters to board or alight comfortably.
The suggestions were accepted by the HC and the railway board, which further directed both the Western and Central Railway to raise their platform heights in a time-bound manner. The Central Railway (CR) has promised to complete the work on 59 critical platforms by May 2016.
In the first phase, which is currently under progress, the height of the platforms ranging between 820mm and 840mm will be raised up to 900mm. In the second phase, the work on platforms that are higher than 840mm will be undertaken.
“The height of 6 platforms has been raised, while another 17 will follow. Besides, we expect to start work on four platforms at Kurla and Dadar soon,” said a senior railway official.