02:22 PM Jun 01, 2019 | Free Press Journal Correspondant

Harrowing time for Howrah Mail passengers

Passengers travelling from Calcutta to Mumbai by the Howrah Mail (Train No 12810) on March 8, 2014 had a horrible journey. Due to the derailment of a goods train early on Sunday morning, March 9, 2014 near Bhusaval, all trains were running behind schedule. However, for reasons best known to Central Railway authorities, the Howrah Mail was made to halt in the outer lines of most stations for hours together, and other express and mail trains were allowed to pass.  Thus, this train, which was supposed to reach Dadar at 4.59 am on March 10, 2014, reached Dadar after an 11-hour delay — ie at 4 pm that day.


One fails to understand the logic behind the CR signalling team to hold up this particular train. The passengers, especially parents with small children,  patients, ladies, handicapped persons, senior citizens and many youngsters who had interviews the next day, on Monday, with central and state governments, were the worst affected .The pantry car ran out of stock and by the time this train reached major stations, there was no breakfast or lunch. None of the major stations, be it Akola, Bhusaval, Jalgaon,Nashik Road or Igatpuri, found it fit to make announcements for the abnormal delay. Frequent travellers on this train revealed that a delay of two to three hours is the norm for this train. Will the CR authorities look into this matter?


S K Venkateshan

Manners-on-the-go generally


On March 15, I travelled on the Kolhapur-Koyna Express, in a general compartment. I boarded from Dadar Station, where the train also filled up.  As more people boarded from Thane and Kalyan, on the way, they were sitting wherever they could find a spot on the train, making it hard for passengers to use the facilities, apart from blocking the way with their luggage and even using the toilet to store it. In the midst of it all, the nuisance of beggars. The compartment was strewn with litter. This seems to be the story on all long distance trains like the Indrayani, the Karjat-Pune Passenger and others. Why can’t we have strict rules of passenger conduct on trains and why can’t violators be punished with fines?


Public, not VIPs get first dibs on inauguration

The MMRDA is publicity-hungry. According to them, the election code is on, so the time for inauguration is not right. It is the people’s money that is being spent. So people alone have the right to inaugurate it. The small S-section that the MMRDA is talking about is a modification carried out a couple of years ago, which connects the SCLR to the Eastern Express Highway from Sion to Thane. If what the MMRDA says is correct (I have doubts), then all the arms to the Tilak Terminus and Kurla East can be inaugurated. The traffic meant for Amar Mahal can go to Tilak Teminus or even Kurla East and access Thane Highway. MMRDA did a similar inauguration for Eastern Freeway – which was not at all complete – only one part of the BARC Tunnel was partially ready. The other part is yet to be ready. All because they had a VIP ready for inauguration – a person of their choice. There should be a total ban on inauguration of all publicly-funded projects. The length of SCLR is also reported wrongly – it should be the distance from Amar Mahal to Kurla LBS Marg Junction.

P R V Raghavan

Dream city regressing into nightmare

‘Adi-Vashi’ has very rightly highlighted the issues of Navi Mumbai and how a dream city is turning retrograde to become adivasi. As regards MTHL and the four-laning of the Sion-Panvel expressway these are projects that get wrong priorities. The LEA associates report has proposed a third bridge across the creek between Koparkhairane and Ghtakopar/ Vikhroli. Ideally this should be taken up on priority basis as it will provide easy east-west connectivity between Mumbai and Navi-Mumbai. Unlike MTHL, which will only serve the purpose of the rich and famous staying in SoBo,who want a quick getway from SoBo to reach their farmhouses in Alibaug. Uran, Ulwe, Dronagiri are not yet populated unlike Airoli, Ghansoli and Koparkhairane. Moreover, the area of SEEPZ and western suburbs and the Millennium Park have created lot of job opportunities and there is considerable traffic, yet no one is demanding this bridge across the creek.

Jitendra Lonkar,Environment Planner,

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