Video showing no physical distancing on Mumbai’s workmen special train goes viral

A video, supposed to have been shot on a workmen’s special local, and showing passengers not maintaining physical distancing, went viral on Friday. While authorities refused to comment on the video, railway unions said staff had complained to them about crowding.

The Railways have been running workmen’s special trains for staff during the lockdown by attaching a light engine to passenger coaches. Since Thursday, local trains have also been run for staff.S hivaji Sutar, Chief Public Relations Officer, CR, said they were looking into the matter. “We are not in a position to comment on the video as we have not authenticated it,” he said. The video shows a compartment with all seats occupied and many standing.

“Since the introduction of the Shramik Specials, we have had to mobilise more staff which has necessitated the need to run these special trains,” said a senior Railways official.

Venu Nair, general secretary, National Railway Mazdoor Union, said they had received several complaints from workers regarding the lack of physical distancing on trains and they hadraised this with the administration. “In a workshop like Matunga, a turn out of 30% amounts to over 2,000 workers. Railways should either reduce the number of workers or increase the number of trains,” he said, adding that physical distancing needed to be ensured in at least the specials run by Railways for their own staff before they can even think of opening it for the general public.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 8:09:33 AM |

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