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Railway reviews arrangement for Sabarimala pilgrimage

Posted on Nov 12, 06:35AM | UNI

A review meeting on special arrangements during Sabarimala Pilgrimage season was conducted by Railways at Chengannur Railway Station, today.

Representatives from KSRTC, Health Department, Kerala Police and Ayyappa Seva Sangham also attended the review meeting, according to official sources here.

The meeting reviewed the facilities at Chengannur in anticipation of increase in number of pilgrims and rail traffic this year.

Union Minister of State for Labour and Employment Kodikkunnil Suresh appreciated the facilities given by Railways to pilgrims, especially the provision of 'Jan Ahar' (low cost food) packets for pilgrims.

The Minister said he will also arrange medical assistance through ESI during the pilgrim season and measures will be taken up for stoppage of bi-weekly Chennai express and Bhavnagar express at Chengannur during the season as in previous years.

Suja John, Chairperson, Chengannur Municipality, Rajesh Agrawal, Divisional Railway Manager, Thiruvananthapuram division, spoke on the occasion.

Provision of lift at railway station will be commissioned in the current year and sufficient water supply will be ensured by pumping water from river Pampa, he assured.

The comprehensive review of special arrangements made by Thiruvananthapuram division includes additional counters at reservation centre and at ordinary ticket counters, enquiry counters with multilanguage manning, special reaservation counter at Pampa, special counters for Police, Medical, Fire Force and KSRTC authorities with additional lighting and parking.

The arrangements in the current year have been significantly enhanced with completion of toilet and bath facilities, lift, foot over bridge and access road to pilgrim shelter.

The Sabarimala season leads up to six additional trains per day, causing severe traffic congestion in the already saturated single line at Chengannur. Railway authorities are making arrangements to ensure all trains can be received for the sake of pilgrims.

A team of Railway officers and senior supervisors under the leadership of Rajesh Agrawal, Divisional Railway Manager, are reviewing the arrangements, sources added.