Mumbai local train services were thrown open to the general public on February 1! With the local train services being resumed by Indian Railways with restricted timings, around 36 lakh commuters are using the city’s suburban rail network every day. The daily ridership of Mumbai’s suburban train network consists of 19.30 lakh people on the Central Railway zone and 16.50 lakh people on the Western Railway zone. Since February 1, Central Railways has fined 2,060 commuters a cumulative sum of Rs 1.21 lakh for not wearing face masks while 2,558 commuters were penalized on the Western Railway network and the amount was Rs 3.21 lakh, according to an official quoted in a PTI report.
Central Railway CPRO Shivaji Sutar was quoted in the report saying that the zonal railway just assisted the BMC in taking action against the passengers traveling without face masks. Mumbai local train services for the general public started on February 1 with restricted timings, after a gap of 320 days, having been suspended by the national transporter on March 22 last year as the nation went into COVID-19 lockdown to contain the spread of novel coronavirus. From 15 June 2020, the local trains were thrown open for frontline and essential staff engaged in the fight against the pandemic.
The graded increase in Indian Railways passenger train services may lead to full resumption of all passenger train operations across the rail network from 1 April 2021, in view of the festive season. The national transporter has been increasing the number of passenger train services over the last few months with more than 65 per cent of trains are now running across the Indian Railways network. More than 250 passenger train services were added in January 2021 alone and more trains are expected to be added gradually in the coming days.