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Mumbai: Central and Harbour line services halted; commuters protest, pelt stones at trains

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Thousands of commuters were inconvenienced after suburban rail services on the Harbour and Central lines were disrupted on Friday morning during peak hours after a public agitation.

The protests started around 8.30am on the Central line when commuters got down on the tracks between Diva and Mumbra to protest against the delayed services. The protests soon spread to other areas and continued for hours.

Harbour line services came to a halt after motormen reportedly refused to operate trains due to security reasons

According to reports, police had to resort to lathi charge to forcefully remove the agitators from the tracks after the latter pelted stones at trains.

The ticket window at Dombivli station on Central line has been broken, and automatic ticket vending machines (ATVM) thrown on tracks, according to TV reports.

A few motormen have been injured, other motormen are planning a strike to protest against the unruly behaviour of commuters. Agitators demand for trains from Diva station as minister Eknath Shinde arrives in a bid to pacify the tense crowd.

The services were delayed on Friday morning on the Central Railway due to disruption in power supply in the overhead equipment (OHE) wire during the peak hours. Following this, the public began agitating and got on the tracks to protest the regular failure in the suburban services.

Public occupied all the four lines on the fast and slow corridor between Diva and Mumbra. The rail roko has affected the Central Railway line since Friday morning.

The railway officials expressed helplessness to operate the services due to the rail roko.

“The commuters have occupied all four lines between Diva and Mumbra since morning 8.30am. We are not able to operate the services because of it. There was power supply problem in morning but it is restored now,” said Mukesh Nigam, divisional railway manager (DRM), Mumbai division.

According to latest reports, the services on the fast corridor were restored after GRP forcefully removed the agitating commuters from the tracks at Diva. Services on the slow corridor were yet to be started.

The agitation is on even as union railway minister Suresh Prabhu is on a visit to Mumbai for a BJP meet.

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