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Indian Railways on 15 June started the Mumbai suburban(Mumbai local) train services after 84 days of complete closure since 23 March for the staff who are on associated with providing the essential services.

The Mumbai local train services which are operated by the Western and Central Railway zone of Indian Railways have made some changes with how travelling in the generally crowded MUmbai trains will change in the times of covid-19.

As of now Railways have allowed only 700 passengers have been allowed to travel per train, as against the seating capacity of about 1,200 persons.

The railways tried to effectively put the norms of social distancing and keeping a watch that these norms are being followed at all the stations where the trains stop like Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, Dadar, Thane and Kalyan stations etc. Railways have put marking at more than 1 meter has been done to maintain social distancing. Security personnel have been deployed at various stations to form queue and smooth handling of crowd. TTEs have deputed to ensure convenience of valid ticket traveller.

Sanitising of station and suburban trains

In order to prevent the infection of coronavirus, the work of cleanliness and sanitization at suburban stations is going on continuously and the work of sanitization of suburban trains is also being done continuously.

Central Railway is running selected suburban services on its Main Line and Harbour Line section. A total of 200 services (100 down and 100 up) are being run, out of which 130 services are being run on the main line between CSMT and Kasara / Karjat / Kalyan / Dombivali / Thane. And 70 services are running on the harbour line between CSMT and Panvel.

Essential services staff travelling in a Mumbai local train.
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Essential services staff travelling in a Mumbai local train.

Western Railway runs 81 pairs of its 12 car suburban services (total 162 i.e. 81 in Up direction & 81 in Down direction). Out of these 146 ( 73 up & 73 in down) services will run between Churchgate & Virar, while 8 services will be operated between Virar & Dahanu Road.

Mokshi Jain, working as a Medical Officer at Sion Dental Hospital said that the commencement of Mumbai suburban train services for the essential staff as identified by the state government will help greatly.

Sheela Singh, Staff Nurse, said that when the Mumbai suburban train services started for the essential staff as identified by the state government, felt very happy. Earlier the travel by bus used to take a lot of time, now I can comfortably get to the hospital and thank very much to the Railways.

Indian Railways in close liasioning with GRP, local police, various Railway departments is trying to ensure social distancing, queue management and prevention of spread of covid-19. Later on, the staff will be issued QR based E-passes by the State Government, which will also bear colour coding to enable swifter ticket checking.

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