The Maharashtra government has written to the Indian Railways, seeking permission to allow everyone to travel on local trains in Mumbai with staggered timings.
In a letter written to the general managers of the Central Railways and Western Railways, and also to the Commissioner of Police, Railways, Mumbai, state Disaster Management, Relief and Rehabilitation secretary Kishor Raje Nimbalkar proposed separate time slots for essential service providers and the general public.
Nimbalkar also proposed to run one ladies' special train every hour, reported The Times of India.
As per the proposal, the general public can be allowed to board trains during three non-peak time slots.
> From the start of first local train till 7.30 am
> 11 am to 4.30 pm
> 8 pm till the last train for the day
For essential service providers, as categorised by the Maharashtra government, the proposed time slots are:
> 8 am to 10.30 am
> 5 pm to 7.30 pm
The state’s proposal also asked the railways to run one ladies’ special train every hour.
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“The above proposed time schedule would require increasing the frequency of local trains to meet the demand of above proposed commuters,” the proposal stated.
The Uddhav Thackeray-led government has proposed different time slots to encourage private offices to stagger work timings, a senior official told the publication.
Currently, around seven lakh are using Mumbai’s local train network, especially during peak hours and if more are allowed during the same time, it will not be possible to maintain COVID-19 protocols, the official was quoted as saying.
The state government did not propose any desired date for allowing general public in the local trains, said to be the lifeline of the financial capital.
The Central Railways is preparing inputs for submission to the state government, said the report citing CR’s chief public relations officer Shivaji Sutar.Follow our full coverage on COVID-19 here.