After stepping up vigil to curb miscreants from stealing fixtures at the air-conditioned dormitory at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), railway authorities are now dealing with a new menace.

The dormitory also provides a towel and a bathing soap. Former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal inaugurated the retiring room in April last year. File pic
The dormitory also provides a towel and a bathing soap. Former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal inaugurated the retiring room in April last year. File pic

Attendants at the dormitory are complaining that passengers are making off with the blankets provided to them during their stay. Authorities said since the retiring room was thrown open to travelers on April 16 last year, apart from the light bulbs and bathroom fixtures, several blankets have gone missing.

'Checks are difficult'
To solve the problem, the authorities have asked attendants to check the luggage of guests when they check out. But officials said it is not practical to implement such checks on a routine basis.

“To curb the thefts, we have been educating passengers taking shelter here, but it becomes very difficult to check each and every passenger’s luggage,” said a railway official on the condition of anonymity.

One of the attendants working here said that in the current year as many as 20 blankets have been stolen. He added that the maximum thefts have taken place in the women’s dormitory.

The Central Railway started the dormitory facility to provide safe and cheap stay to passengers. “Most of the time, the dormitories are full with passengers, as we charge a minimum price for a 12-hour stay,” added the railway official.

“Besides the blankets, even towels and bedsheets have been stolen from the facility by the passengers. Moreover, we are held responsible for these thefts,” said another attendant. A contractor hires the attendants who look after the maintenance and cleaning work at the dormitory.

Officialspeak
Jitendra Patil, chief public relations officer, Central Railway, said, “We will have a talk with the contractor and look into this matter. We will also create awareness among passengers, and request them not to carry out such acts.”