The Central Railways on Thursday informed the Bombay High Court that trespassing accounted for 60 per cent of deaths or injuries of passengers travelling by local trains while only 35 per cent of such cases were due to people falling off a running train.
A bench of Justice Naresh Patil and Justice Shalini Phansalkar-Joshi were hearing a bunch of petitions related to safety of passengers travelling by local trains. The Central Railways said there were 2,108 deaths and 1,856 injuries till November 2014 and 1,821 deaths and 1,727 injuries till October 2015.
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“In cases of trespassing, 50 or more cases are of six stations, which are Kurla, Ghatkopar, Thane, Mulund, Diwa and Kalyan. Maximum cases are reported from Thane. Cases of passengers falling off trains are frequently reported from Kurla, Ghatkopar, Mulund, Thane, Kalwa and Mumbra,” said advocate Suresh Kumar, who appeared for the railways. He was referring to an internal report prepared by the railways.
The report says 80 per cent of incidents of passengers sustaining injuries or dying because of trespassing took place between stations or at locations far away from roads or where foot overbridge (FOB) is not accessible.
The railways recommended construction of FOBs to curb such incidents. To prevent cases of people falling off running trains, the railways suggested increasing the frequency of trains and having longer trains.
The court said it seemed no one wanted to take any responsibility from the railways. “Everyday people die or are disabled because of administrative failure,” said Justice Patil.
The court, meanwhile, asked for the state’s response in relation to an earlier suggestion made by the railways of allowing elevated tracks to be built over the existing tracks, which apparently had been shot down due to issues pertaining to Floor Space Index.