Talking to The Indian Express, 21-year-old Surendra Murmu said he and his five friends came to Kurla in two autorickshaws from Kanjurmarg. “It cost us Rs 360. We had to take the autos as there was no train from Kanjurmarg. But we did not know we would not get a train even from Kurla,” he said.
Mohammad Bhai, a 70-year-old man, had been waiting at Kurla station since 10 am. He makes a living making duplicate keys at Sandhurst road station. “Bahut barishein dekhi, par jaisa haal pichhle kuch salon se ho raha hai, aisa kabhi na hua (I have seen many monsoons, but what’s happening over the last few years is different).”
Shahrukh Khan (28) was in Kurla to attend his sister’s wedding with his mother Sayara Bano (49) and other family members. He was waiting for a train to Thane. “Yeh toh ab roz ka natak ho gaya hai, thodi si baarish Mumbai doobne lag jati hai (This is an everyday drama, a little rain and all of Mumbai drowns),” said Sayara.
On Tuesday, on the Central Railway line, 2,000 outstation travellers were stuck at Lokmanya Tilak Terminus (LTT) near Kurla. Most had valid tickets to travel and were frustrated because there were no announcements about when their train will be rescheduled. Some went back home but others continued to wait, hopeful that their train may be announced any moment.
The derailment of a goods train on the Ghat section and heavy rains, which flooded tracks between Kurla and Thane, led to 10 to 15 Express long-distance trains being cancelled on Tuesday, leaving from LTT to different states.
Sonali Bhandari (44) and her daughter Divyanshi (19) had come from Agra for college admissions. They had arrived Monday morning by air and were scheduled to board the Hazrat Nizamuddin Express back to Agra. After waiting for two hours, they went back to Goregaon where they had been staying with relatives. The mother and daughter had confirmed tickets in three-tier AC coach.
One other family, who had booked tickets on Udyog Nagari Express from LTT to Pratapgarh district in Uttar Pradesh, were also waiting for news about their train. Uday Kumar, a resident of Patna in Bihar, who works as a house help in Mulund, had booked a ticket on the Patliputra Express nearly a month ago. “I reached Thane station at around 10 pm for the train’s scheduled arrival at 11.35 pm. Initially, there were announcements that the train was delayed. After midnight, there were announcements about many trains being cancelled but not about ours. There were no announcements about rescheduling or information,” Kumar said.
The inquiry counter was jampacked with more than 300 passengers asking about their trains. After spending more than 14 hours at the station for suburban trains to start, Kumar stepped out of the station to take an autorickshaw, but the they too were asking Rs 200 for distances less than 2 km. He then waded through waterlogged roads to reach home