Limited local trains resume in Mumbai for essential staff, no overnight service: Read full details | Bombay News

A limited number of commuter trains began whizzing by in the Mumbai Metropolitan Area (MMR) from Monday morning after a gap of more than two and a half months, officials said.

Rail services resumed a day after a statement to that effect was issued jointly by Western Railway (WR) and Central Railway (CR).

Local services on the network of Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR) – the lifeline of the city – are specifically for Maharashtra government employees who are engaged in essential services, both specified in the statement .

According to railway officials, approval to resume local train services was received from the Ministry of Railways on Sunday evening. Discussions between the Ministry of Railways and the Maharashtra government over the operation of the trains continued until late Sunday.

The CR will run 200 services (100 up + 100 down) on its main line – between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus at Thane, Kalyan, Karjat and Kasara and Harbor line – Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus and Panvel, according to the release.

The WR will operate 73 pairs of commuter services, including eight pairs between Virar and Dahanu Road, he added.

These trains will run from 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., according to the joint statement.

About 1.25 lakh of state government essential service workers are expected to travel through these limited special services. Normally, more than 85 lakhs commute daily on suburban networks covering Mumbai, Thane, Palghar and Raigad.

The special trains of the Cheminots, already in circulation, will continue to circulate and the personnel of the Fprce de Protection Ferroviaire (RPF) will be deployed in the various stations.

Food stalls and the like will not be open, the statement said. There are also “No Hawker” and “No Parking” zones within a radius of 150 meters.

To maintain social distancing, the railways plan to allow 700 passengers per local train. A 12-compartment room has a capacity of 1,200 passengers, but regularly during peak hours before the lockdown, up to 5,000 commuters would travel by train.

A few reservation counters will be operated in the Center and West stations. The service will be restricted to essential workers and medical personnel, who will receive an electronic pass with details including a photo, name, designation, office station, residence station and mobile phone number.

The e-pass is likely to have a QR code which will be scanned at the point of entry.

Michelle J. Kelley