The escalators at the Chandigarh Railway Station, installed about four months ago, have run into an unforeseen problem, making their functioning unpredictable.
Station superintendent R K Dutta said children from nearby areas, for whom the escalators were a novelty, came and played on these. They also fiddled with the emergency switches, bringing the escalators to a halt.
“Every time someone uses the emergency switch, somebody from the control room has to be called. The engineers have to open it up to restart it which takes time,” Dutta said.
He linked the problem to a lack of 24×7 security on the station, though the station authorities stop the escalators every day from noon to 3 pm because there is no arrival or departure of trains during this time.
But passengers complain that the escalators are non-functional even when they need these. Bhushan Vasadeva, 77, who frequently travels to Delhi, said, “This is the third time that the escalators are not working. What is the purpose of the escalators if we have to take the stairs?’’
Shirish Sinha, ADRM at Ambala, said he had not received any complaint regarding the escalators. “It has been a long time that the escalators were inaugurated, and we thought that these must be working. But I will check up with the Chandigarh station.”
The escalators are the responsibility of the Engineering and the Electricity Departments. Sources said that the Engineering Department was planning an alternative to the emergency switches so that the escalators could function uninterrupted.
Meanwhile, the construction of eight new booking counters is likely to be completed in the next two months. The station will then get a new look with a dome-shaped structure being built at the entrance. The station superintendent said that the idea of the structure had been taken from the Inox mall in Sector 6, Panchkula.