Protesting commuters block Eastern Railway’s Sealdah main line

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Kolkata, Sep 8 (IANS) Train services were disrupted on the Sealdah main line section on Saturday as a group of people obstructed train movement at Sodepur station for almost three hours protesting against the trains running late, an Eastern Railways spokesperson said.

“We had issued notifications for development works which would benefit the daily passengers. But this kind of disruption is totally unexpected,” Eastern Railways chief public relations officer Ravi Mahapatra said.

The notification had stated that trains were running late due to the ongoing non-interlocking work for commissioning of an automatic signalling system between Barrackpur and Ichapur. The work started on September 7 and will end on September 10.

Mahapatra alleged that the agitators pelted stones at the station master’s office and damaged office furniture.

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As a result of the obstruction during peak hours, hundreds of passengers were stranded as three EMU on the up line and 15 EMU locals on the downline were detained.

Normal train services were resumed on the Sealdah Ranaghat section as the obstruction that started around 9.30 a.m. at Sodepur station was lifted at 12.30 p.m.

As a result of the obstruction, three up and down trains had to be detained en route for two and a half each on an average. 20 EMU locals had to be cancelled.

“It was quite unfortunate that the obstructors assaulted the on-duty station superintendent during obstruction period and ransacked his cabin.

“One Express and three passenger trains were also detained for two hours each on average,” added Mahapatra in a statement.

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–IANS

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