Passengers risk their lives for a seat in this train

Passengers risk their lives for a seat in this train

Train services from the town to Bengaluru have become hugely popular with the extension of Chikkaballapur-Bengaluru train to Kolar. Since the services are scarce, the huge demand for train facility is putting passengers at risk.

At least 1,000 passengers travel by Chikkaballapur-Kolar-Bengaluru train every day. The services of the train were extended to Kolar from November 20. Apparently, more number people are taking the train. The train leaves Chikkaballapur at 8 am and 4 pm to Bengaluru. While some are regular travellers who have obtained annual pass, some purchase tickets. Of course, there are some passengers without ticket too.

In their bid to get a seat in the train, passengers attempt to board the train which is still in motion.

Some stand on the other side of the platform, on another railway line to board the compartments, risking their lives. The mad rush into the  bogies results in a commotion and sometimes passengers quarrel also. There have been instances of passengers getting injured while attempting to board the train from the other side (opposite the platform).

The train service has become popular since one could travel to Bengaluru by paying a fare of only Rs 15. As the number of bogies in the train is insufficient, passengers struggle to find accommodation. Some travel standing, close to the door, putting their lives at risk, said Lakshminarasimhappa, a commuter.

The District Rail Passengers Struggle Committee has written to the authorities concerned to address the problem. They have also approached the elected representative.
However, they say, there had been no enthusiastic response from anyone else. “I had submitted a memorandum seeking more number of bogies in the train. I have written to the Prime Minister, Lok Sabha member, the Member of Legislative Assembly and senior officials of the Railways department.

But, none has taken care to address the issue,” said Syed Mehmood, the secretary of the Committee. He said that the sale of travel tickets had been going up every day. People from places such as Kolar, Srinivaspur, Chintamani and Shidlaghatta travel by trains. In addition, significant number of passengers board the train at Nandi, Devanahalli and Yelahanka. In spite of knowing all these facts, the authorities concerned have not been taking any steps to ameliorate the plight of passengers, he said.

It is an offence to walk on rail tracks. But, people here wait for the train and board the compartments, standing on the rail track. The issue needs to be addressed before something untoward happens,  Mehmood added.