Railway apathy turns CST premises into dump yard
Central Railway's administrative building at CST is in shambles, and is home to piles of rubbish, old files and discarded furniture
A 40-year-old architectural landmark of the city is today a dumping ground for old files, broken chairs, tables, wooden crates and other rubbish, thanks to the apathy of the authorities at Central Railway (CR).
Built in 1973, the CR’s six-storey new administrative building, which is adjacent to platform number 8 of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), houses the offices of the chief commercial manager, IRCTC and several other railway departments.
According to a disgruntled railway employee, who has to make his way through the junk daily, the discarded items have been lying here for more than five years now, and CR authorities have made no attempts to clear the debris, despite several requests.
A railway source said that CR officials are using the building as a godown to stack the unused and discarded items, when they are supposed to ensure that the trash is disposed off at Wadi Bunder.
No action taken
A senior railway official, who has his office in the building, said that they had written to the higher-ups several times, asking them to dispose the waste strewn across the corridors, staircases and the area beside the lift. However, they failed to initiate any action.
“I have sent several reminders to the concerned authorities requesting them to clear the garbage from the building premises, but nothing has been done yet. The debris all over the premises is not only an eyesore, but also hinders our movement. Moreover, it is a hazard during an emergency,” said a railway official, on condition of anonymity.
The official added that with the old files, broken chairs and tables lying around, cats, rats and even snakes have taken refuge in the debris. “The staircase, hallway, lift area and all possible open spaces have been used to dump the discarded items. Other offices get renovated, but this building gets leftover material, which is ideally supposed to be dumped at Wadi Bunder,” added the official.
According to another senior CR official, the headquarters and the DRM building are older than this structure, but are are well-maintained. Only this building has been meted out step-motherly treatment. “Why are the railway authorities biased against us? Several top officials have meetings here and have to make their way through a railway godown. Later, even they complain about the bad maintenance of the building, but nothing is done,” added another CR employee. Several railway officials who work here say that they are tired of complaining to the senior railway administration and have now given up.
The other side
R D Sharma, chief commercial manager, CR, said, “I have written to the concerned officials and we will start the procedure to remove the debris soon.” Atul Rane, chief PRO, CR, said, “We will check and remove the garbage soon.”