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Why can’t Railways use foreign technology to fix gap between footboard, platform, asks Bombay high court

The bench said every other day, commuters fall into the gap, with lives being lost

mumbai Updated: Aug 08, 2018 01:27 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,platform gap,Bombay high court
(Hindustan Times FILE )

Concerned with the dangerous gap between footboard of local trains and the edge of platforms in Mumbai, the Bombay high court (HC) on Tuesday asked the railway administration why it could not deploy the technology used in foreign countries, where there is hardly any gap between suburban trains and platforms.

“In foreign countries, there is hardly any gap between the footboard of suburban trains and the edge of the platforms,” said a division bench of Justice Naresh Patil and Justice Girish Kulkarni. “If we are on a par with the developed world in many ways, why can’t the railway administration bring in the technology used in those countries and prevent the fatalities,” it said.

The bench said every other day, commuters fall into the gap, with lives being lost. “The gap is a major problem for commuter safety,” the judges told additional solicitor general Anil Singh. Singh replied saying the railway administration will consult experts and find out viability of the technology employed in developed countries.

Singh was responding to a bunch of public interest litigations raising concern over the high number of accidents and fatalities on suburban trains in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region and safety of commuters.

One of the PILs is based on an HT report highlighting the plight of a 25-year-old Nerul resident, who was molested on a running train between Nerul and Thane. When she approached the police at Thane railway police station, instead of registering her complaint and attempting to find the culprit, the police snubbed her, asking “why she wanted to lodge a complaint when she was neither robbed nor raped.”

During the course of hearing on the PILs, the lawyer for one of the petitioners brought the issue of ailing bridges on the Mumbai suburban network and the threat posed to commuters. Anil Singh responded to the contention saying the repair work on rail overbridges is carried out by the railways, but the funds are provided by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

Singh said the railway administration has identified the repair works required to be done and has sought ₹27crore, but the administration has started processing the works without waiting for the payment from the civic body.

First Published: Aug 08, 2018 01:26 IST