Food plaza at railway station still hangs fire
The future of the food plaza at the Ludhiana railway station is still hanging fire, even as passengers suffer for want of hygienic food at the local station. It has been more than six months since the building for the food plaza was completed, but it is yet to become operational.
The food plaza is still awaiting police verification, following which it would get a medical certificate from the health department.
On February 20, station superintendent Ravinder Sharma claimed that the talks to start the food plaza were under process and that the plaza would become operational by next week, but nothing happened.
Around two years ago, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) had allotted the task to a private vendor, but the vendor had been delaying the project since then, due to which the IRCTC terminated its licence.
Passengers at the Ludhiana railway station rue that there are hardly any options for good food at the railway station. Even if the service finally starts functioning at the exit gate, it wouldn’t be of much use to commuters who have to catch the train, as they would not be able to keep a tab on the train’s timings as the plaza is away from the platform.
“The food plaza would be an option only for the passengers who travel long distance and have to wait for the trains for hours. Those who are in a hurry cannot go so far away from the station to eat at the plaza,” said Rakesh Malhotra, a passenger who travels frequently to Delhi from Ludhiana.
Station superintendent Ravinder Sharma said the authorities were making efforts to open the plaza at the earliest. After the police verification is over, the food plaza owners would get the medical certificate to run it.