Two months after it suspended services due to Coronavirus lockdown, Mumbai local trains on Saturday resumed services for essential railway employees. As per circular by the Railways, these trains — CSMT-Panvel, CSMT-Karjat, and CSMT-Kasara — are making a total of eight trips every day. Meanwhile, the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) also resumed intra-district bus operations from Saturday. Bus drivers have been told to run the buses at 50 percent occupancy to meet social distancing norms.
Earlier on May 13, in interaction with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray requested to start Mumbai suburban railway services for the use of those working in essential services.
Railways resume services
This comes a day after the Railway Ministry said that the Indian Railways will be opening its reservation counters for booking of reserved tickets in a phased manner from May 22. The Indian Railways has also allowed the booking of reservation tickets through the common service centres and ticketing agents from May 22.
“Zonal Railways have been instructed to decide and notify the opening of reservation counters as per local needs and conditions. These reservation counters will open from May 22 in a phased manner, along with dissemination of information about their respective locations and timings as per the local needs and conditions,” read an official statement issued by the Ministry on Friday. The statement also stated that the Shramik Special trains will continue to be handled by local State governments as per the existing protocols.
Mumbai COVID tally
Mumbai on Friday recorded its highest one-day increase in the number of coronavirus patients at 1,751, which took the city’s tally of cases to 27,068, said the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). Further, with 27 new deaths, the toll due to the pandemic in the country’s financial capital reached 909 on Friday, the BMC said. 329 COVID-19 patients were discharged from city hospitals during the day, taking the number of recovered patients to 7,080.
The BMC said that out of 27 patients who died due to COVID-19 infection, 22 had various co-morbidities. 276 of the new 1,751 COVID-19 patients had tested positive at various labs on May 17, it added. The civic body set up `1916′ dedicated helpline for coronavirus on April 24. To date, 69,407 calls have been received on this helpline, which is manned by 48 staff in three shifts along with a team of 3-4 doctors, it said.