Suburban Railway services increased in Mumbai
With growing demand for trains during the morning and evening peak hours, more than 200 services have been added this week in Mumbai's suburban rail network - considered the lifeline of the financial capital.
The train services were shut down on March 22, when the day-long 'janata curfew' was imposed after which followed the subsequent lockdown period in the wake of teh coronavirus pandemic.
On 15 June, skeletal services re-started for people engaged in essential services, state and central governments, banks and so on.
However, with Maharashtra government's Mission Begin Again gaining pace and Unlock -4 underway, the demand for local trains has increased and there has been a series of agitations in the Mumbai metropolitan region (MMR) again.
When the Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR) restarted, there were totally 450-odd services - which were gradually increased - and this week, over 200 services have been added.
On Monday, the WR scaled up its services from 350 to 500, while on Thursday, the CR increased services from 355 to 423.
Out of these 68 additional CR services, 46 will be on the main line between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus to Kasara, Khopoli and Karjat, and 22 on the harbour line between CSMT to Panvel and Goregaon.
More than 80 lakh people use Mumbai's suburban network daily, that is spread across six lines covering 390-odd kms and 157 stations in the Mumbai metropolitan region comprising five districts of Mumbai City, Mumbai Suburban, Thane, Palghar and Raigad.
CR and WR collectively run over 3,000 services daily but now scaled down services are being run.
Railway passes can be purchased based on I-card and QR-code that one has to obtain.
Some videos of overcrowded trains have gone viral - but these were on Tuesday and Wednesday when heavy rains choked services.