Train passengers stranded at Bhubaneshwar after lockdown declared in WB

Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], July 29 (ANI): Hundreds of passengers from across the country who were headed towards West Bengal by train were stranded in Bhubaneswar after the Falaknuma Express terminated here, following the lockdown in West Bengal.

July 29, 2020

National

4 min

zeenews

Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], July 29 (ANI): Hundreds of passengers from across the country who were headed towards West Bengal by train were stranded in Bhubaneswar after the Falaknuma Express terminated here, following the lockdown in West Bengal.
According to Kazi Muzaffar, a stranded passenger from Visakhapatnam, no information about the termination of the train at Bhubaneswar was given to the passengers beforehand.
“I had booked my ticket over a month ago. I got on the train from Visakhapatnam last night but was not informed that the train would not go beyond Bhubaneswar. At 5 am in the morning they woke us up and told us to deboard the train. We waited at the station for a while but the cops came and kicked us out of the station also. Now we are stranded here with no food, no water and nowhere to go,” Muzaffar told ANI.
“We tried asking the station administration about the next train but they told us tickets were unavailable. They seem just as clueless as we are. I am trying to book a bus ticket but I heard it costs around 1200 rupees. Many of us will not be able to afford it,” he added.
Sakeena Khaitoon, a stranded passenger from Mumbai, expressed concern regarding the negligence on the part of the railway station administration.
“They just kicked us out of the train without giving us a reason and now they expect us to fend for ourselves. We have never been here before. Where will we go? I left Mumbai with my family to go to my hometown in Howrah because we couldn’t make ends meet due to the COVID situation. And now we are stuck here because of this lockdown. They should at least arrange a bus for us. We have been able to somehow put together some money for the expensive tickets but now they are telling us that buses might not get permission to enter the state. We don’t know how we are going to get through the night,” Khaitoon told ANI.
Chitaranjan Nayak, Bhubaneswar Station Director, however, told ANI that the passengers were informed about the termination of the train at Bhubaneswar beforehand.
“Individual train holders were given a notification that trains would not be going to West Bengal. Everyone was informed that they were free to travel till Bhubaneswar but it would not go further than this. They all started to gather at the platform and we had to tell them to leave as it would increase the risk of spreading COVID-19,” Nayak told ANI.
He added that a special train could be arranged for the stranded passengers.
“It seems that many passengers have left the area, very few people are around the station at the moment. If they all gathered at the station, a special train could be arranged for West Bengal,” he said.
The West Bengal Government on Tuesday had announced the state-wide complete lockdown till August 31. (ANI)

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