More local trains likely, state may allow more essential service staffUpdated: Jun 30, 2020 00:39 IST
The Central and Western Railway along with state government officials on Monday confirmed that the number of local train services is likely to increase in the week.
The meeting focused on permitting more people working for essential services, increasing the operation of train services and maintaining social distancing inside the local train compartments.
The railways have asked the state to provide a detailed list of essential service employees who will be permitted to travel by train. “We have asked the government to speed up the process of issuing e-pass and also provide a list along with the number of passengers allowed to travel in local trains. Local train services will be increased after reviewing the additional number of employees.” said a railway official, who attended the meeting.
A state government official said the list was expected by Tuesday. “We have asked for the list of employees expected to travel by local trains from the organisations that are included in the list of the essential services. We expect the list to be provided by Tuesday, after which the planning for the additional services can be done. Around one lakh more employees will be permitted to travel by local trains, in addition to the existing lot of 1.5 lakh employees,” said an official on conditions of anonymity.
The officer said that for now, nationalised bank employees have been allowed to travel by local trains. The state has allowed defence personnel, employees from customs, income tax, post offices to travel by trains meant for essential staffers. The officer added that they may consider allowing employees from private and cooperative banks at a later stage.
On Sunday, the Western Railway announced the operation of 40 new train services. A total of 202 local train services will be operated on the slow and fast line. Services will be introduced between Churchgate and Virar railway stations. Train services will also be introduced between Borivali and Vasai Road railway stations.
The railways resumed local train operations in the city for essential workers on June 15. More than 200 train services are being operated by Central Railway and 202 train services are being operated by Western Railway.