Banaswadi rly station needs better facilities

Sample this dangerous incident which occurred around 9.30 pm a couple of days ago. Hundreds of passengers were waiting on platform one to board the Yeshwanthpur-Kochuveli Garib Rath Express. Unfortunately, the Chennai-Hubli Express had a delayed arrival on the track adjoining this platform. Due to the absence of a public announcement system here, the station master had no other option but to dash out of his cabin and holler at the top of his voice, “This is not Garib Rath. It is on its way on the other side. Rush to platform two.”

In the absence of a foot-over-bridge connecting the platforms, the chaos that prevailed among the public beggars description. Every passenger had to enter the stationed Hubli train, disembark through the other end, and trespass on the tracks to reach platform two before the train arrived. Altogether 20 trains (10 pairs) have a two-minute or three-minute stoppage at this station. The recent ones to begin a stoppage here are the recently launched Bangalore-Hosur suburban train service (in both directions) and the Bangalore-Nagercoil Express. The Yeshwantpur (YPR)-Kannur Express, YPR-Kochuveli Garib Rath Express, Hubli-Chennai Express, Vasco-Chennai Express, Yeshwantpur-Salem Passenger, YPR-Howrah Express, YPR-Puducherry Express trains stop here both ways.   

This is the scene at the station presently: no parking facility, no staff to man ticket counters,  permanently locked bathrooms, no drinking water, no canteen, platforms yet to be concreted and absence of a pre-paid taxi which leaves passengers completely at the mercy of greedy auto drivers nearby.  

What infuriates residents of Vivekananda Nagar, located on one side of the station is the haphazard parking of four-wheelers along the 4th Cross Road. “The scene is terrible when trains to and from Kerala stopover,” explains Elizabeth. “The loud honking and haggling between passengers and auto drivers in nights really disturbs sleep,” said Joel, a businessman, who resides here.

A highly placed railway official said, “This is just a small station and due to huge public demand, we agreed to have a short halt for trains. Now, they are demanding facilities.” Divisional Railway Manager, Akhil Agrawal assured to provide public address system at the station immediately.

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