CHENNAI: Local trains in the city might have been started with the sole intention to ease traffic on the roads but the service is not really serving the purpose. Most stations are deficient in connectivity and safety, claimed some of the commuters who opted for private vehicles.
R Shyam (26) from Adambakkam, who works in a private company at Mylapore said that he would rather shell out more money on fuel than spending his time on waiting for the crowded trains. If he has to use the public transport, then schedule would be - to go to St Thomas Mount railway station in his two-wheeler and park it there. Then take a train to Fort station and again take another MRTS train to Mylapore. From there he has to either walk for about 20 minutes or take an auto. “Though the fuel hike does affect my pocket, I would still spend on it as I can reach my destination within an hour’s time in my own vehicle,” he said.
27-year-old Raji from Triplicane too faces the same problem when she has to go for work near Kotturpuram. She claimed that though she could take an MRTS train from Triplicane to Kotturpuram, it is the lack of bus stands or auto stands nearby the station that forces her to take her two-wheeler though she gets exhausted by the time she could take her seat in the office. “I have no choice. Look at the MRTS stations, they scare you. And Kotturpuram is one of the few places in the city that does not have connecting MTC buses,” she said.
And she had other issues too. She claimed that women cannot use MRTS stations after sunset. “People from the nearby slums occupy the station. It is just not safe for a woman to go to MRTS stations after 7 pm,” she said.
Commuters claimed that busy suburban trains too have increasingly become unsafe for woman. “Forget the peak hour rush. There are robbery cases reported even in a ladies compartment. The situation is worst after 10 or 11 pm... Moreover, I can’t wait for buses or autos to get to the railway station after 9 pm. I don’t mind straining myself to ride my vehicle to my workplace than risking myself in a public transport,” said Anuradha (30) of Pudupet, who works in a private bank at Nungambakkam.