There’s good news for passengers who first have to crisscross the city — suffering traffic chaos and also adding to it — and then jostle their way around at railway stations to catch a train.
Stuck for long, the three “directional terminals”, planned on the lines of the one built at Anand Vihar to take pressure off New Delhi and other important stations in the Capital, are back to being the priority.
The daily footfall at the New Delhi and other stations in the Capital is 15 lakh. These stations together deal with nearly 1,000 trains every day. Anand Vihar terminal takes care of east-bound trains and diverts footfall from other stations. Those living in east Delhi or Ghaziabad don’t have to come to central or Old Delhi.
The railways is working on three such terminals —Bijwasan in southwest Delhi, Holambi Kalan in north Delhi and Shakur Basti in northwest Delhi. Railway minister Pawan Bansal, in his budget speech, had stated that studies for a terminal at Bijwasan will be taken up during the year. What can be interpreted is that the project can be executed expeditiously, said a senior official.
Located near the IGI airport, Bijwasan will serve a large number of people in Dwarka and Gurgaon. The terminals at Shakur Basti and Holambi Kalan will cater to passengers in areas such as Rohini, Pitampura, Narela and Bawana.
“Bijwasan will be a world-class terminal and will have trains operating for western and northern India. People going to cities such as Ajmer, Jammu and Jaipur will benefit. The project will be completed on PPP model,” said Anurag Sachan, northern railway’s divisional manager (Delhi).
“Our station development authority has been entrusted with the task to complete the project. A consultancy contract has been finalised,” he added.
“We have also acquired land for the Holambi Kalan terminal. But some patches are yet to be taken over because of ownership issues. We had planned for both passenger and goods terminals there. But as cement usually has to be transported, and human habitation has gone up in the area, there could be some problem in getting environmental clearance,” Sachan said.
“As for the Shakur Basti project, we have land available. North and west-bound trains going to Jammu, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan can operate from there. People in west and north Delhi have to commute long distances to reach any of the existing stations,” said another official.