Articles by Shashank Rao
Mumbai: The Central Railway (CR) lost almost 21 hours in November due to delays in train services caused by 71 incidents of alarm chain pulling; this included incidents in suburban locals as well as long-distance trains
Mumbai: The decision by the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking to operate buses without conductors has backfired, resulting in financial losses due to ticketless travellers
A redesign of seating arrangements on air-conditioned (AC) local trains to create more seats for women, making space for a luggage compartment, induction of more such trains on the fast line, and an increase in the halt time are some of the recommendations made in an interim report recently presented to Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC)
The deceased worker was identified as Dhanajay Gopal Chawhan. Originally from Allahabad district in Uttar Pradesh, he joined the job last year and lived in the Kolshet area of Thane
The Central Railway in Mumbai has installed a Signal Location Announcement System (SILAS) in a local train to prevent trains passing red signals. SILAS will announce the presence of upcoming signal poles displaying red to the motormen, helping to prevent accidents. The equipment will be installed in 10 more trains in the coming days. This decision came after a recent incident where a train jumped a red signal. SILAS alerts the motormen when the train is 350 metres and then 250 metres away from the upcoming signal pole.
21 out of 549 complaints received by the Regional Transport Office in Wadala about auto and taxi drivers were found to be fake. Passengers have been misusing the WhatsApp number provided to vent their frustration. The auto and taxi union leaders have criticized this initiative and have demanded action against those filing fake complaints. Commuter activists and transport experts have advised passengers to be more careful when lodging complaints.
The Central Railway in Mumbai plans to regularize hawking on local trains, allowing vendors to sell consumables and non-consumables.
Nearly 500 students were provided accommodation at Royal Palms in Goregaon after their arrival in the city on November 24. But the rooms were smelly and unclean, bedsheets were stained, corridors did not have sufficient lighting and food was served on tables joined together in a single line
Government agencies are addressing the nuisance caused by mini electric bikes in Mumbai, including haphazard parking, rash driving, and breaching of traffic signals. The bikes are not regulated under the Motor Vehicles Act or transport department rules, making it difficult to enforce regulations. Citizens have complained about the misuse of the bikes, and officials are urging the e-bike operator to ensure proper parking.
Sources said that once the encroachments were demolished, garbage and excreta would be removed from the tracks, which would help CR engineers carry out the necessary improvement works on the tracks. The CR authorities intend to make the harbour line capable of taking train speeds up to 105 kmph from the present 80 kmph, which will improve punctuality as well in future
A while ago, CR’s Mumbai division created two slots—9.30 am to 5.45 pm and 11.30 am to 7.45pm—for employees working at its CSMT office. The scheme began on November 1, and the employees have the option of selecting either one of the above rosters on the first of every month
Sources said a recent incident showing rats running on the kitchen floor and nibbling on vegetables inside the pantry car of a long-distance train parked at Lokmanya Tilak Terminus didn’t go down well with the Railways, although the contractor was fined ₹25,000
Central Railway in Mumbai plans to set up a prefabricated cinema hall and a camping site at two of its stations to increase non-fare revenue. The cinema hall will be located at Dombivli station and is expected to generate an annual income of INR 47.85 lakh ($74,000). The camping site will be set up at Palasdhari station and has an earning potential of INR 27.92 lakh ($43,000) per year. However, rail passengers have criticized the plans, stating that the railway authorities should focus on improving train punctuality and passenger amenities.
Sources said that 15-car rakes could be introduced on the Andheri-Churchgate slow line in a phased manner – first from Andheri to Bandra or Dadar, and later, further south
Demand for tourist buses and commercial cars in Mumbai during the Diwali weekend is less than 60%, a significant drop from the usual 95%, due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Bus and car operators are hoping for an improvement in business next week. The top destinations from Mumbai are currently Goa, Mahabaleshwar, Pune, Shirdi, Kolhapur, and Bengaluru. Last year, demand for intercity buses was 95-98%, while demand for commercial cars exceeded 100%. The availability of private vehicles and the operation of special train services by the Railways are contributing to the lower demand for public transportation.
This number stood at 2.07 crore commuters who used the UTS app in October 2022 for travelling inside local trains. According to the railway officials, this is a massive jump in the number of commuters who are using digital tickets and season passes to travel in the suburban local trains
Central Railway plans to increase the number of trains originating from Dadar station's Platform 5 to decongest the station and accommodate more commuters. The authorities will remove the barricade between Platforms 4 and 5 and improve track alignment. They are also widening Platforms 1 and 2 and shifting stalls and offices to create more space on the platforms. Dadar station currently has six platforms and a daily footfall of over 500,000.
These equipments will track the content of fine particulate matter in the air, respirable dust sampler, and noise pollution. For instance, the fine particulate sampler samples PM2.5 in the ambient air. Explaining the working of the equipment, an official said ambient air enters the system through an omnidirectional inlet and traps the particles
The National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd (NHSRCL) is taking measures to mitigate air pollution at the construction site of the bullet train station in Mumbai's Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC). Initiatives include using mist guns, enclosing raw material and waste materials, providing green nets, and sprinkling water on the roads. A wheel wash facility has also been provided to prevent dust emissions.
The need for extending the sixth line till Borivali assumes importance because it will ensure that long-distance trains stay away from the fast lines of suburban rail. As per an internal deadline, WR authorities are looking to complete the extension of sixth till by March or latest by June 2024
Five new air-conditioned (AC) trains will be added to Mumbai's Western Railway line in the next 2-3 months, bringing the total number of AC trains to around 50-60. The move is in response to rising demand and overcrowding on current services. The new trains will increase the number of AC services to 96, up from the current 79. Each AC train will operate 10-15 services a day, running as AC trains on weekdays and non-AC on weekends. The Western Railway has seen a significant increase in the number of commuters using AC trains, with numbers jumping from 63,547 daily average in the last financial year to 2.24 lakh commuters daily average between April to October this year.
Central Railway (CR) in Mumbai is expanding the capacity of long-distance platforms at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) to accommodate longer trains. Once completed, platforms 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14 will be able to handle 24-coach trains, increasing their carrying capacity. The work involves removing and relocating overhead equipment, dismantling washing pits and stabling lines, and inserting railway turnouts. The project, costing INR 62.12 crore, is being carried out in two phases, with 45% of physical progress already completed.
The decision to have dedicated stands for autorickshaws below metro stations in Mumbai has not been implemented despite approval by the transport department. Unions have raised concerns about the lack of infrastructure, such as boards, signs, and fare charts, at the stands. Once the stands are in place, the demand for different routes will be assessed before finalising long-term plans. The stands will benefit commuters in the western suburbs of Mumbai.
The revitalization of Wadi Bundar, which was once a bustling freight traffic hub, is expected to bring new life to the area and boost connectivity.
Starting Nov 6, the Central Railway will introduce 10 more AC local services by replacing regular local trains. The total number of AC locals will increase to 66 services daily. On the other hand, the Western Railway has restored 224 train services for Nov 1-2, cancelling only 112 services in a day.
Central Railway (CR) in Mumbai has implemented staggered working hours for its staff to reduce overcrowding on local trains. The new hours of 9.30am to 5.45pm and 11.30am to 7.45pm were due to begin in December, but were brought forward to 1 November. The divisional railway manager for Mumbai, Rajnish Kumar Goyal, organised meetings with employees, unions and fellow rail officers to ensure the changes were feasible. Goyal also plans to write to government organisations and private companies to encourage them to adopt staggered working hours.
According to sources in CR, an internal circular to introduce flexible work hours has been sent to the employees. “This will benefit employees to avoid peak hours for travelling by trains from their residences to CSMT,” reads the circular, a copy of which is with HT
Commuters of Western Railway in Mumbai will face more inconvenience as the railway is set to cancel 316 train services every day from Monday to Friday, which is almost 23 percent of its total daily services. The cancellations are due to essential works being carried out during the night, resulting in massive crowds at stations. The railway police have been posted at important stations to monitor crowd control. The works include upgrading the signalling system with electronic interlocking to improve train operations. Alternative transport services have been questioned by commuters.
The state transport department in Mumbai has started cracking down on heavy vehicles such as buses and trucks for contributing to air pollution in the city. Inspections are being carried out to check if proper norms are being followed while transporting construction debris and garbage. Vehicles found to be in violation will be impounded and necessary action will be taken. Associations of transporters claim to be following prescribed norms and are unhappy about being targeted by the government. The BMC has also issued guidelines to control air pollution from vehicles.
Over the last few days the WR launched an effective communication campaign appraising Mumbaikars about the laying of the sixth line between Khar and Goregaon which has necessitated this mega block. Between Friday and November 6, the WR will cancel a total of 2,525 services