Mumbai: Women commuters allowed train travel in MMR during non-peak hours
Women commuters have been allowed to travel by suburban trains in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) during non-peak hours from Wednesday following a permission granted by the Union Ministry of Railways on the previous day.
They are allowed to travel between 11 am and 3 pm and after 7 pm in a bid to prevent overcrowding in suburban trains amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak in MMR.
Western and Central Railways authorities said women passengers do not need to show their identity cards or scan a quick response (QR) code on their smart phones in their bid to travel by suburban trains. Only their tickets would be checked, they added.
Thermal screenings of women passengers will be conducted before entering railway stations.
Earlier last Friday, the Maharashtra government had urged the ministry to allow women commuters to travel by suburban trains.
However, the ministry had asked the state government to give details of an estimated increase in the number of commuters and other modalities as preventive measures because of the viral outbreak.
The back and forth between the state government and the ministry led to a delay for a few days in the grant of permission for women commuters to travel by suburban trains during non-peak hours.
The Central and Western Railway authorities operate 706 and 700 local trains, respectively, daily in MMR.
The rail authorities had allowed only people from the following categories to use suburban trains after the gradual easing of lockdown restrictions, which were enforced from the end of March in a bid to keep the contagion at bay.
They included employees, who were at the frontline sector battling the Covid-19 pandemic, differently-abled people and cancer patients.