If you are planning to go to the Bangalore City Railway Station to see off or receive your near and dear ones this Dasara, hold it right there: you will not be issued platform tickets. The only solution is to not go or to wait either at the main entrance or at the Okalipuram entrance.
However, those accompanying passengers in need of attendants, such as the aged or women travelling alone or the sick, will be issued platform tickets on a case-by-case basis.
“The move is only aimed at ensuring hassle-free journey for passengers as the platforms at the station is chock-a-block with non-passengers during every festival season,” according to Bangalore Divisional Railway Manager Akhil Agarwal.
While over 1.5 lakh passengers, both arriving and originating, make use of the city station on a routine day, over 10,000 platform tickets are sold every day, Mr. Agarwal told The Hindu. During festival seasons, the number of platform tickets sold would cross 15,000, he added. The railways will give publicity through the media on the period of restriction.
To a question whether the move will not affect the passengers and non-passengers, especially strangers to the city, Mr. Agarwal said that non-passengers could come up to or wait at the lobby of the station. At airports too, non-passengers were allowed only till the lobby, he pointed out. He said that either special counters would be opened or designated officers deployed to issue platform tickets to non-passengers accompanying persons in need of attendants.
The Railway Board has given a general approval to all the zones to impose restriction on the entry of non-passengers to platforms during festival season, said Senior Divisional Commercial Manager Anwar Hussain. If the entry of 10,000 non-passengers was restricted, space would naturally be available to as many passengers to purchase tickets and make the journey, he said.
The move was also aimed at reducing the security threat and maintaining hygiene on the platforms, Mr. Hussain said. Otherwise security personnel at the gates would get overburdened and might not be able to do the security checks properly. The festival rush would not only affect smooth navigation of passengers across platforms, but also create chaos, he added.