At Shivajinagar station, 50k commuters struggle due to sluggish pace of remodelling
Pune Railway Division has been working to pave and raise the height of the platform at the station, while commuters have to deal with the resulting uneven ground and stagnating water every day
Over 50,000 railway commuters going through Shivajinagar railway station have a daily struggle while boarding trains, due to the uneven ground and stagnating water on the platforms. Ironically, the platform is in its current dilapidated state because the railway division is attempting to pave the platform for passengers’ convenience, but has failed to finish the project in the past three months.
Hop, skip and jump: Commuters are restricted to a certain portion of the c and have to step into the filthy water to make their way to trains. Pics/Shashank Sane
Residents of areas such as Aundh, Baner, Pashan, Kothrud and Karve Nagar often board both locals and Mumbai-bound trains from this station, which leads to significant traffic passing through it every day. However, with the 200-metre stretch on platform 1 currently being paved, commuters have to fight against the dangerously uneven ground, as well as dodge the sometimes 20-foot wide puddles stagnating there.
The puddles are not just an inconvenience to commuters who wish to keep their socks dry, but are also a health hazard, with the PMC constantly issuing warnings against any stagnant water sources, which could potentially become breeding grounds for dengue mosquitoes. The accumulated water is the run-off from the paving process being undertaken at the platform, but the uneven ground forces the water to collect right there.
Railways officials have said that they are using inter-locking pavers on the platform to raise its height, in order to bridge the gap between the arriving trains. Yogendra Kumar Singh, PRO of the Pune division said, “In order to avert any incidents of passengers falling between the train and platform, we began the project to increase the height of the platform. The total cost of the repair work on the 200-metre platform at Shivajinagar railway station will be approximately Rs 25 lakh.”
“Despite the fact that this railway station will be undergoing a complete makeover under the Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation Limited (IRSDC), likely to start next year, raising the platform height was not planned for that project, so we are making the changes instead, for the convenience of the commuters,” added Singh.
However, there are still complaints that the indifferent attitude of the railway administration is slowing down the pace of the remodelling project, and it could take another three months before passengers can finally use the finished platform.
For the last three months, I have been facing a hard time while boarding trains from platform number 1. Things were at their worst during the monsoon. There have been instances when passengers have slipped due to stagnant water on the platform. -Vikram Bhide, working professional
The work is being carried out at a snail’s pace, and is causing a lot of inconvenience to passengers. About two weeks ago, I had a narrow escape as I was about to trip and fall into the gap between two coaches
-Ragini Gaikwad, self-employed
It is a nightmare to board the train from Shivajinagar, as the platform is in a complete mess. Many a time, I have had to walk through water and board the train, which can be very risky
-Salman Sayed, working professional