Baripada (BPO): Protesting the alleged callousness of the South Eastern Railway (SER) authorities for development of railway infrastructure in Mayurbhanj district and lack of facilities at Baripada station, the Mayurbhanj Railway Travelers’ Forum threatened to go for an agitation.
Mr Pradyumna Kumar Jena, a member of the forum, informed that they would stage a rail roko on 6 January. “We had recently met the senior railway officials and held a meeting regarding fulfillment of our demands in the presence of senior district officials. The meeting, however, failed to resolve the issues. We will stage a rail roko at Baripada station on 6 January to highlight our demands,” he said. Mr Jena observed that a strong sense of resentment is brewing among the district’s population for the step motherly attitude of the railway authorities. “The negligence meted out to Rupsa-Baripada-Bangiriposi section which comes under Kharagpur Division is continuing despite all our pleadings. We have stressed on, among other things, capacity augmentation and running of trains on time,” he said.
Mr Jena, while listing out the lack of basic amenities and facilities at Baripada railway station, said that it is no less than a nightmare for a passenger to depend on the station. “The passengers and commuters even face problems as there has been frequent link failure at Baripada ticket booking office. One telephone connection should immediately been given to the office,” he said. Alleging that the platform is full of potholes, Mr Jena charged that it causes inconvenience to the passengers, particularly the elderly, women and children. Some of them have also been injured in recent times.
The vice-president of the Forum, Mr Kishore Kar stressed on augmenting the facilities and also lengthening the platform to accommodate the coaches of trains like Bangiriposi-Bhubaneswar superfast express. “The platform of Baripada station must be extended so that additional coaches can be added to the without any inconvenience. installation of fare and seat availability display board, digital clock and CCTV Camera at Baripada ticket booking counters are our other major demands,” he said.
The Forum also demanded running more number of trains and proper preservation of century old steam toy engine at Baripada station. “We also demand converting Betnoti station to a crossing station for proper timing of trains in Rupsa- Baripada-Bangiriposi section as per public needs and demands. Change in departure time of Baripada-Shalimar Similipal Intercity Express from Baripada and running this train daily instead of tri-weekly basis is high on our agenda,” Mr Kar added.