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Srirangam, Tiruverumbur railway stations feel ignored

While substantial investment has been made to augment facilities at Tiruchi railway junction, neighbouring ones like Srirangam and Tiruverumbur continue to be plagued by shortage of amenities.

Frequent travellers, who board from Srirangam, where important express trains halt, say a major portion of the station lacks shelters. The absence of platform shelter causes huge hardship to passengers who are forced to stand under the scorching sun. The problem compounds if there is a sudden downpour.

As considerable portion of the platforms do not have shelters, passengers are left with little choice and take refuge in the covered area and rush towards the coach upon arrival of the train.

Seating arrangements are inadequate on the platforms, forcing senior citizens to stand till the arrival of the train, says C.S.Ananthakrishnan, a resident of Srirangam.

There are only a handful of seats, which is inadequate given the large number of passengers boarding the Rockfort, Mangalore, Pallavan and Guruvayur Express trains daily, he adds.

Lack of coach indication boards is another issue which has been persistently raised by travellers boarding from Srirangam.

Barring platform 1, the remaining platforms do not have coach indication boards, Mr. Ananthakrishnan pointed out. Provision of the facility will hugely help passengers to stand at the exact spot where the coaches will halt.

In the absence of coach indication boards, passengers have to rush towards their respective compartments carrying their luggage to board trains, which has stoppage barely for two or three minutes.
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The railway administration should not restrict passenger facilities at Srirangam station just because it is under ‘D’ classification. In view of the rise in passenger traffic over the years at the station, it should treat Srirangam as a special case and improve the basic facilities as demanded by passengers.

Mr. Ananthakrishnan says many travellers boarding from Srirangam are senior citizens who find it difficult if the incoming train halts on the fourth platform. Halt on platform 1 will make it easier for passengers to exit the station.

As for Tiruverumbur station, Adarsh status has meant precious little as the requirements of the travelling public in the town and several villages in the surroundings continue to be ignored.

Be it creating a hassle-free approach path to the station or ensuring the stoppage of express trains, the repeated representations notwithstanding, there is no forward movement on the part of the railways, lamented Shanmugavelu, Advisor, Tamil Nadu Makkal Valarchi Kuzhu, which has been championing the cause of stoppage of express trains at Tiruverumbur station as a pre-requisite for broad-basing patronage.

The organisation was given an assurance that their demand would be considered positively once electrification works between Tiruchi junction and Tiruverumbur station gets completed. But the demand has been put in cold storage despite completion of the work, Mr. Shanmugasundaram complains.

Laying a proper path to the station from Tiruverumbur bus stop is key to increasing the number of rail passengers, which, in turn, will become the basis for the railways to take serious steps towards stoppage of express trains, according to Sakthivel, social activist and former BHEL employee.

Stoppage of express trains at the station will be of immense utility to the economically backward population in the surrounding villages as the fares are much lesser when compared to buses, Mr. Sakthivel points out.

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