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Free for all: Covid norms go for toss in local trains

Not only physical distancing, but even masks were not apparent as a large number of commuters flouted the norms. Taking a tough stand, the Eastern Railway fined 500 commuters in the two days of resumption of local train services.

Statesman News Service | Kolkata |

Overcrowded rake and large number of commuters without masks-Covid protocols went for a toss on the first working day of the week today after
the resumption of services.

Railway stations, platforms and some of the halts saw huge turnout of commuters eagerly waiting for a local train to be able to reach their workplace. As the clock ticked past 9am, the crowd became thicker at Howrah, Sealdah and other stations under the two divisions. At Jadavpur Railway Station, EMUs arrived with commuters hanging on the footboards.

A similar crowd was seen at Dum Dum, Bidhannagar, Ultadanga, Hindmotor railway stations. Physical distancing norms inside coaches were largely violated in several trains, platforms and stations while commuters demanded more and more services to cater to the huge rush.

In numerous local trains, not only all seats remained occupied but the coaches were packed with commuters jostling to make room for themselves. “Forget about physical distancing, being able to board the train is a difficult task in this kind of rush,” claimed a commuter at Howrah Station.

“The commuters also cannot be blamed for the huge rush as everyone needs to reach their workplace on time. The only solution to the problem is that the Railway authorities need to run more services to bring some relief to the commuters who are having a tough time while travelling in local trains that are running in packed condition,” added another commuter.

Not only physical distancing, but even masks were not apparent as a large number of commuters flouted the norms. Taking a tough stand, the Eastern Railway fined 500 commuters in the two days of resumption of local train services.

Meanwhile, commuters  at Nalpur station under Howrah Division and at Islampara halt station in Katwa line staged protests against the galloping system during office hours and demanded more services.

The protestors at Islampara blocked the tracks disrupting services for hours. The service were normalised after the intervention of the RPF.