Jogeshwari Railway Station On The Radar For The Next Stampede?
Jogeshwari to be the next Elphinstone: Jogeshwari Railway station remains heavily crowded at all times as a result of narrow staircases and platforms making it the next hot spot for a stampede
Mumbai – The Elphinstone road stampede took away 23 innocent lives. Learning their lesson the hard way from the tragic incident, the Railway Ministry, as well as the Maharashtra government, had assured construction of new and broad foot-over-bridges. In the annual Union Budget 2019, the government also announced that all Mumbai stations receiving a footfall of more than 25,000 per day will get escalators. After this decision, the Maharashtra government has started the construction of a new bridge at Elphinstone road, seeking help from the army, and also one at Ambivali.
Jogeshwari to be the next Elphinstone?
There exist many railway stations on the Western Railway that are highly prone to similar accidents in the future and demand immediate attention. Jogeshwari railway station is one among such stations. Recently, Gayatri Rahul, a vigilant citizen tweeted a few pictures that make us look back to the tragic Elphinstone road stampede.
Gayatri wrote in her post “A gate made by the railways has been closed now. It’s a relief to know that the Police is helping people. But when will we have broader staircases? The situation is under control today as people are following queues everywhere on the bridges. The history must not repeat itself as the Elphinstone road.”
It can be clearly seen in the picture that the platforms are crowded as a result of people rushing to climb the staircase. The trail cannot move at a faster pace as the foot-over-bridge is quite narrow. The Police have to be on their heels to enable a smooth flow of passengers and direct them to follow queues while walking on the bridge. Both of the two staircases of this bridge are problematic.
Only one narrow staircase to go from
The road next to Platform 1 and railway tracks are separated by a wall. A gap has been formed in this wall as a result of weathering. Every day, several people risked their lives and crossed the railway line in order to get to the platform without hassles by passing through this gap in the wall. Now, the hole has been covered and the passengers are only left with the sole choice of taking the foot-over-bridge, which makes the bridge even more crowded.
The project of laying harbour line tracks in Jogeshwari railway station is near completion. For facilitating this addition, the additional platform towards Jogeshwari west has been cleared off. As a result, passengers from both Platform 1 and 2 alight at the same platform, making it a dangerously crowded place. Due to the platform being very narrow, it gets very difficult for the passengers to move across the platform. Children and senior citizens face difficulties and have to suffer the most due to this problem.
I commute from Jogeshwari to Dadar every day between 8:00-9:00 AM. Although I do not face any difficulties reaching Dadar, I find it twice as difficult to get out of Jogeshwari station. The platforms are always heavily crowded which makes it near-impossible to walk with baggage.”
Railway must do the needful
The Elphinstone road stampede started with a false rumour that actually turned into reality. Similar instances can be often seen at Jogeshwari station. Although the new bridge at Jogeshwari railway station is yet under-construction, the Railways must resort to a temporary solution for the growing problem of going to and fro the bridge so that the passengers can commute in peace and Jogeshwari railway station stays far away from being under the threat of a tragedy like that of Elphinstone road.
Source: mumbailive.com (Jogeshwari to be the next Elphinstone)