HT spot check: Damaged platforms, dysfunctional prepaid rickshaw services greet passengers at Pune rly station
A bsence of sitting space and non-availability of affordable food are also the problem areasUpdated: Jan 17, 2020 17:07 IST
Passenger footfall at the Pune railway station has been steadily increasing but, the central railway administration is falling short when it comes to maintaining Pune railway station.
The same can be seen from uneven and damaged platform floors, dysfunctional prepaid auto rickshaw services, construction material and huge marble tiles lying on the platform with passengers sitting on them due to lack of seating space and absence of service from the affordable food outlet ‘Jan Aahaar’ canteen that has been closed since the past two months due to renovation work.
On an average the railway station sees a footfall of at least two lakh passengers and 180 trains operate at the railway station daily, according to railway officials.
Passengers are finding it difficult to walk on platform no 1 where the surface is uneven due to flooring work that has been underway since the past couple of months. Other than paid private drinking stalls present at prominent spots, the normal railway drinking water tap is not easily accessible. There is no other toilet open for public use other than the pay and use toilets.
Jeetendra Bhagwat, a regular commuter from Pune railway station, said, “Last week while boarding the train from platform no 1 I almost fell down due to construction material lying over there. Railway administration should complete the job quickly and not create hurdles for passengers while boarding and getting down from the train. If any accident happens due to this then who will be responsible for it.”
Another passenger Ruchi Pant said, “The prepaid auto stand is a good initiative but as it is closed auto drivers fool new passengers by quoting high fare rates. This prepaid system should be started immediately.”
Talking about this overall issue related to passenger facilities Renu Sharma, Pune divisional railway manager (DRM), said, “We are working on improving the passenger facilities at the Pune railway station, the flood construction work that is going on at platform no 1 will be completed soon. Also, I will follow up about starting the Jan Aahaar canteen as soon as possible and even look into the prepaid auto rickshaw stand issue as to why it is closed down. Overall our focus is providing better service to our passengers and accordingly necessary steps will be taken by the railways.”
Platform 2 and 3 housed serious health hazards with private contractors having left canteen stock material such as vegetables, gas cylinders on the platforms. Flammable items such as gas cylinders are strictly not allowed inside railway stations and on trains and despite this, they were found on the platforms. Garbage was also seen lying outside and around dustbins.
Comparatively, platform 4 and 5 were much cleaner with ample seating space, however, some of the drinking water taps were leaking with a lot of water going to waste. Platform no 6 was also well maintained except for electricity wires that were hanging down from the covering sheds that were missing from the middle section of the platform.
The prepaid auto rickshaw stand that was started last month by the traffic police is dysfunctional due to technical glitches and passengers are being charged exorbitantly high rates by auto drivers.