With Diwali just a day away, the Northern Railway has made special arrangements to secure the railways stations and trains and to ensure the safety of passengers. As part of the drive, the sale of platform tickets has been stopped to restrict the entry of non-passengers on the platforms.
The officials are also expecting the rush at the railway stations to lessen soon as the Diwali and Chhat Puja rush is about to start waning. “The festive rush of passengers for Diwali and Chhat Puja is expected to decrease substantially from Monday. The reason is that most of the people leave before Diwali because of the short gap between the two festivals,” said a senior official.
But the official was quick to add that special arrangements for festive rush will continue even after Chhat Puja.
Dealing with the festive crowd on stations remains a challenge for the railway administration. In order to check the extra flow of passengers on platforms, a temporary ban on the sale of platform tickets has been put in place from Sunday at the four busiest railway stations in the Capital – New Delhi, Delhi Junction, Anand Vihar and Hazrat Nizamuddin.
For clearing the rush at these stations, 25 extra booking counters and an equal number of reservation counters have also been set up. On Saturday, Northern Railway General Manager along with other senior officials also made a “surprise” visit to New Delhi railway station.
The Northern Railway authorities have also enhanced the security at the stations to provide safe travel to the passengers. According to a railway official, 15 extra companies of the Railway Protection Force have been deployed for security purposes on Delhi’s four main stations. Besides this, the movement of people in and around these stations is being closely monitored through over 100 closed circuit television cameras that have been fixed at various vantage points.
“We have round-the-clock monitoring room at all these stations. But even more importantly, we are also keeping a tab on those who monitor these cameras in monitoring rooms,” the official said.