CHENNAI: The Korukkupet Railway station in North Chennai, which caters to the nearby areas including RK Nagar, Bharati Nagar and Jeeva Nagar, continues to be neglected by railway authorities, allege commuters. From lack of toilets to absence of drinking water facility and security at the station, there are issues aplenty.
“The amenities at the station reflect the attitude of railway officials towards stations in North Chennai. The public water tap inside the station is filled with stagnant water with algae floating on it. There are no toilets at the station, even though suburban commuters have to, at times, wait for an hour to catch a train,” said S Vishwanathan, a 60-year-old commuter. Despite around 20,000 commuters, including college students and office-goers using the station, it does not even have a demarcated parking space. “The station is open on all sides and the area is not safe during night time. Despite that, we have to leave our vehicles beside the station master’s office,” pointed out R Suresh, a 25-year-old.
Recently, before an official inspection, water taps had been installed at the station, but overnight they were removed by miscreants, reveals a source from Southern Railways.
Another problem faced by commuters and residents in the area is the railway level crossing (LC) at the station. Around 10,000 vehicles, including trucks catering to nearby industries, cross the LC everyday. During morning and evening peak hours when frequency of trains is high, motorists have to wait for more than an hour. “Many people, especially those with two wheelers, take risks by going under the gate and trying to cross when it is closed. Replacement of the LC with a bridge is of utmost importance, but it is pending for years now,” said a railway official.
A senior member of Tiruvottiyur Rail Passengers Association (RPA) T S Thiyagarajan said that Korukkupet was an important junction for freight trains, but passengers were being neglected by the Southern Railways. “The frequency of trains is low and amenities are poor, when compared to other routes. We have recommended converting Korukkupet or Tiruvottiyur as a stoppage for long-distance trains similar to Perambur, but it has not yet been considered,” he said.