Commuting in unlock needs holistic solutions

Updated: 23 September, 2020 07:15 IST | The Editorial | Mumbai

Instead of starting locals en masse and for everyone, which may spell disaster with reference to COVID-19 transmission, a healthy and workable solution should be found to this problem

Few government employees have been allowed to use the locals. Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi
Few government employees have been allowed to use the locals. Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

It is train pain or train bane for all, as the lifeline of Mumbai becomes a bone of contention in these times. With Unlock 4 on, people are complaining about not having enough commuting options to reach their place of work. There are large-scale grievances about the huge amount of time spent commuting to work as local trains are out of bounds for many sections of people as yet.

It is time for the government, Railway representatives, civic workers, police and security agencies to come together and thrash out this problem.

Instead of starting locals en masse and for everyone, which may spell disaster with reference to COVID-19 transmission, a healthy and workable solution should be found to this problem.

Can we see a 10 per cent increase in trains instead of a full-scale increase and stopping at one or two vital stations to alleviate commuting woes? Would that be a measure that can take care of problems in the current scenario? These are questions different arms must ask if they seek to lift restrictions in a staggered manner.

In fact, the groundwork for unlocking must factor in commuting even before the next unlock is announced. Commuting is the wheels of this city on the move and we mean that both metaphorically and literally. When the government allows more workplaces to open or more establishments and workers to go back to work, concurrently, a commuting plan has to be worked out too.

How is the slowly increasing workforce supposed to reach its destination? We need to see some means of transport and more arrangements for people. There has to be a recognition that both are inextricably linked. Let every aspect and facet be considered during the Unlocks where a holistic approach is taken to resolve commuting challenges.

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First Published: 23 September, 2020 05:03 IST

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