Mumbai: Local suburban trains — the lifeline of Mumbai — started operating from Monday morning for essential service providers after being shut for 84 days since March 23 due to the lockdown restrictions, which were imposed to contain the spread of the raging coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak.
The authorities have decided to run 146 and 200 trains daily on Western and Central, including Harbour, Railway lines, respectively.
Only 700 essential service providers will be permitted to board a local train in a bid to maintain social distancing norms to keep the pandemic at bay.
Usually, a local train, comprising 12 bogies, carries up to 1,200 passengers during non-peak hours.
The trains will halt at select railway stations. The trains running on the Western Railway line will stop at Churchgate, Mumbai Central, Bandra, Andheri, Borivali, and all the stations between Dahisar and Virar.
Similarly, on the Central Railway line, the trains will stop at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT), Byculla, Dadar, Kurla, Ghatkopar, Mulund, Thane, Diva, Dombivali, Kalyan, Titwala, Asangaon, Kasara, Ambernath, Badlapur, Neral and Karjat railway stations.
On the Harbour railway line, the trains will pull up at Vadala, Mankhurd, Vashi, Juinagar, Nerul, Belapur, and Parel railway stations.
“It has been decided to extend the validity of the season tickets to the extent of days lost. The counters may also issue tickets and season tickets to people permitted by the Maharashtra government,” said a statement issued by Central and Western Railway.
People, who are considered to be essential service providers, will be allowed to board local trains after an inspection of their identity cards.
Later, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) authorities will issue an electronic pass with a quick response (QR) code.
The railway stations will have a single entry and exit points to be manned by Railway Protection Force (RPF) and Government Railway Police (GRP) personnel.