Thousands throng Mumbai railway station as CR appeals to avoid crowding

Forces deployed to check crowd a day after Maharashtra announced tough COVID restrictions

Last month the Modi government wrote to all social media companies asking them to take down any content that referred to an “Indian variant”. Photo: Only for representational use

The Central Railway (CR) on Wednesday appealed to people to avoid crowding the stations as thousands of people gathered outside Lokmanya Tilak Terminus in Mumbai to board long-distance trains, a day after the Maharashtra government announced a series of restrictions on public movement to check the spread of COVID-19.

The Railway Protection Force and the Government Railway Police have deployed additional force outside the railway station to control the crowd.

The Maharashtra government on Tuesday announced tough restrictions on public movement over the next 15 days across the state. The restrictions, which exclude essential services, will come into effect from 8 pm on Wednesday and remain in force till 7 am on May 1.

Also read: Maharashtra has 5 times more active COVID cases than 6 nearby states combined

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Maharashtra on Tuesday (April 13) reported the highest daily new cases at 51,751. The Union Health Ministry on Tuesday said the state saw the maximum casualties at 258 in the last 24 hours since Monday (April 12).

“Section 144 of the CrPC, prohibiting assembly of five or more people at one spot, will be in force during the period,” Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said.

Talking to PTI, the Central Railway’s chief public relations officer Shivaji Sutar said: “People should not panic and avoid crowding the stations.”

“Only passengers having confirmed tickets are permitted to board the special trains and they should reach the stations one-and-a-half hours before the train’s departure time,” he said.

Also read: Centre blames Maharashtra for slow RTPCR tests for detecting COVID

The Central Railway is constantly monitoring the waiting lists of trains and checking if there is a demand for tickets to any particular destination, he said.

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