CR makes people fall in line to check stampedes at Parel
Mumbai: The Central Railway (CR) has begun taking steps to prevent stampede-like situations at Parel, one of which is to let people enter the platform only in a queue.
Twenty-three people died in a stampede on September 29 at the Elphinstone Road foot over-bridge, which has an interlink facility with Parel on the CR.
“Monsoon is just a fortnight away so we are carrying out drills to ensure that no stampede situation occurs,” Railway Protection Force (RPF) inspector Satish Menon from Dadar said on Thursday. “Since yesterday, we have been asking people to follow the queue while entering the platforms.”
The Parel-Elphinstone Road system of stations has a footfall of 3.5 lakh per day.
“When two trains enter the platform si- multaneously, it becomes overcrowded,” Menon said. “The dispersal of commuters from FOB to station and vice versa gets blocked. The queue system will bring some order to commuter movement.”
The army constructed a bridge at the Dadar-end of the platform but it it did not attract a large number of users. A new platform is under construction at Parel to take the load of platform number1-2, which is jus t8 metres wide.
CR also plans to increase the number of security personnel. “A total of seven staffers work in a shift of 12 hours. We may deploy 10 Maharashtra Security Force (MSF) personnel during the monsoon period to regulate crowd movement,” Menon said.
The RPF said it will also prevent exit to the Elphinstone Road side FOB in case of a heavy rush.