CR services disrupted: Many rescued from locals after night long op, thousands still stranded

CR services disrupted: Many rescued from locals after night long op, thousands still stranded
Apart from suburban commuters, over 2,000 passengers of Mumbai-Kolhapur Mahalaxmi Express were stranded as services on Ambernath-Badlpur section were stopped due to excess waterlogging on tracks (Pictures: CR, Rajendra B. Aklekar)

Thousands of passengers onboard local and outstation trains on Central Railway (CR) were stranded during the wee hours of Saturday as services on the Ambernath-Badlpur section were halted due to heavy rainfall.

The heavy downpour compounded with the overflowing of Ulhas river resulted in water logging at Ambernath late night, forcing CR to cancel, short-terminate and divert several trains.

Following the disruption in services, teams were dispatched to rescue passengers who were stuck in trains along the Ambernath-Badlpur route.

In addition to suburban commuters, over 2,000 passengers on board the Mumbai-Kolhapur Mahalaxmi Express were stranded as torrential rains continued to batter the city.

CR officials along with emergency response teams have been trying to rescue stranded passengers of the Mahalaxmi Express, which has been held up between Vangani and Badlapur since 3 am.

Railway Protection Force and City police have reached the site where the train is held up, and biscuits and water is being distributed to the stranded passengers, said Chief Public Relations Officer of CR, Sunil Udasi.

“We request passengers of Mahalaxmi Express not to get down from the train. The train is in a safe place. Staff, RPF, and City Police are on the train to look after you. Please wait for advice from NDRF and other disaster management authorities,” he added.

Al least eight NDRF boats with personnel are en-route to rescue the stranded passengers. Meanwhile, as of 8:30 am, services have resumed in all sections except Kalyan-Karjat/Khopoli.

Maharashtra’s Directorate General of Information and Public Relations (DGIPR) Brijesh Singh also said three boats have reached the spot where the train is stranded, adding that the Chief Secretary is looking into the situation himself.

Heavy rains lashed Mumbai, leading to traffic snarls and water-logging at several major junctions. Vehicles were seen wading through the waterlogged streets of Sion, Chembur, Gandhi Market at snail’s pace due to heavy traffic jam.

Air traffic was also disrupted for a couple of hours in Mumbai, as seven flights were cancelled and around eight to nine were diverted. Around 8:15 am, Mumbai International Airport PRO had announced that flight operations returned to normal.

According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Mumbai will continue to receive heavy rains till July 29.

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