Long way to go for Anand Vihar station

Railways

Six months after a promising opening, Anand Vihar Railway Station caters to only eight regular trains and six special trains.

The station, said to be developed on a world-class pattern, was expected to decongest the three other railway stations New Delhi, Delhi junction and Hazrat Nizamuddin by taking over all East-bound trains.

Despite the May 16 incident at the New Delhi Railway Station where two persons died in a stampede, Anand Vihar is yet to run its full capacity.

While the station was projected to take over 3 lakh passengers by 2010, it sees only around 22,000 footfalls daily. Railway officials, however, denied any footfall was projected for the station and said only a primary plan to shift East-bound trains was made.

Officials say shifting trains from their present destination terminals is a lengthy process and is likely to take some more time. "We plan to shift around six more regular trains to Anand Vihar by mid-July and 600 runs of summer special trains over a period of three months have been planned," Northern Railways spokesperson Anant Swarup said.

The Railways, meanwhile, is also planning to develop the station under Phase II. Under Phase I, three platforms were made and another four will be added in the next phase. "We have been given nod for Phase II, which involves major operational works like augmenting platforms," a senior Railways official said.

The larger plan for Anand Vihar terminal is to develop it into a world-class station. A tender inviting global consultancies to propose a masterplan for the station will be opened on June 15. "Once we zero in on the proposal, we will have to see the quantum of commercial development that can be done at the site. To begin with we are looking for barrier-free passenger movement," the official added.

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