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Devotees suffer as CR, Shirdi trust bicker

The passenger reservation system centre, operated from the temple premises, has been shut for over a month after authorities and the Trust failed to reach a consensus over relocation of the centre

An apparent tiff between the Central Railway (CR) authorities and officials of the Shri Saibaba Sansthan Trust, Shirdi, has cost devotees dearly. The passenger reservation system (PRS) centre, which was being operated from the temple premises, has been shut for over a month now. The centre had proved to be of great help for the devotees, as they could book tickets immediately after darshan.

CR sources claimed that the centre was shut after officials from both sides argued over a particular issue. “It has been over a month since the PRS centre allotted to us has been shut. They (trust) are giving us alternate accommodation, but at a distance from the temple,” said a senior CR official.

Even the alternative accommodation seems to be disputed. While the CR authorities claim that the building in which the new PRS centre has been proposed is more than 500 metres away from the temple, trust officials say that the structure is just 100 meters away.

Advantage lost
The PRS centre was located adjacent to the main temple, so that devotees could access it the moment they came out. They could confirm the status of trains and book tickets without having to go all the way to the station. Officials at the centre also helped devotees plan their stay in Shirdi.

Temple trust speaks
Trust officials claimed they had to ask the CR to relocate the centre due to security reasons. “The Intelligence Bureau asked us to clear unnecessary crowding wherever possible. For us, security is a major concern,” said Ajay More from Saibaba Sansthan Trust. Officials added that unlike their prasad counters, crowds would gather around the PRS centre.

700
No of tickets booked at the PRS centre daily

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