Mumbai local trains to start for Covid-19 frontline staff from today
The Central and Western Railway along with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Sunday confirmed that local train services would be started on Monday for essential workers as identified by state government.
After a meeting between BMC, Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR), a proposal to operate local train services was sent to the railway ministry for approval.
According to railway officials, approval was received from the railway ministry on Sunday evening. Discussions between the railway ministry and Maharashtra government regarding the operation of trains went on till late on Sunday.
CR is likely to operate nearly 200 train services and WR will operate 73 pairs of trains
To maintain social distancing, the railways is planning to allow 700 passengers per local train. One 12-compartment local has a capacity of carrying 1,200 passengers, but routinely during peak hours prior to the lockdown, as many as 5,000 commuters would travel per train. A few booking counters will be operated on Central and Western railway stations. The service will be only for essential workers and medical staff, who will be given an e-pass along with details including picture, name, designation, office railway station, residence railway station, and mobile number.
The e-pass is likely to have a QR code that will be scanned at the entry point.
“Approximately 1.25 lakh essential staff identified by the state government are expected to travel by these trains. It is observed that due to the lockdown, season ticket holders lost a number of days despite holding a valid season ticket. It has been decided to extend the validity of the season tickets to the extent of days lost. The same shall be permitted at the UTS counters at the stations to those permitted by the state government,” read the statement issued by CR and WR.
Essential employees will have to undergo a two-level check of railway tickets at stations. The first check will be conducted by railway personnel before entering the station and the second will be done through QR code scanning.
The railway stations will have only one entry and exit point that will be manned by Railway Protection Force (RPF), Government Railway Police (GRP), and railway ticketing staff.
Barricading of railway stations and restricting public movement inside will be ensured by city police. “Standard operating procedures (SOP) are being readied,” said BMC commissioner Iqbal Chahal.
Chandigarh received 97mm rainfall between 6am and 8.30am, the heaviest rain in July since 2017, as per the India Meteorological Department. It received another 0.9mm of rainfall during the day. The maximum precipitation till 8.30am was recorded at the Sector 39 observatory (97mm), 49.2mm rain was recorded at the airport observatory, 77.5mm rain in Panchkula and 74.5 mm rain in Mohali.
A flight from Mumbai was cancelled and 19 others were delayed at the Chandigarh International Airport due to inclement weather on Wednesday. Go First flight G8-2506, was unable to take off due to heavy downpour in Mumbai. While 11 flights arrived late, eight departed late. Two Alliance Air flights from Himachal Pradesh were delayed by over an hour due to heavy rainfall in the hill state.
With showers lashing Panchkula on Wednesday, many sectors were flooded with rainwater and cars were seen ploughing through knee-deep water in several areas. Despite the meteorological department's timely warning regarding the arrival of monsoon, the civic body failed to resolve the recurring waterlogging issue, which has been plaguing residents for decades. Just after a few hours of downpour, waterlogging was observed several areas, with Sector 19, the last sector bordering Punjab, the worst affected.
Congress's UT unit on Wednesday organised a protest against the hike in liquefied petroleum gas price by the Union government. Protesters commenced a march from Congress Bhawan in Sector 35 towards the Bharatiya Janata Party office in Sector 33, but were stopped by police, who put up heavy barricades just as the march began. 75% emerging diseases zoonotic: Mohali civil surgeon Mohali Government health institutions across the district observed World Zoonosis Day on Wednesday.
Additional director general of police (ADGP), community affairs division and crime against women, Gurpreet Deo on Wednesday directed the local police to speed up investigation into cases of sexual assault on minors and told them to file chargesheets in such cases within two months after cases are registered.