HYDERABAD: After remaining shut for a little over two months, the Secunderabad Railway Station, the biggest junction in South Central Railway (SCR) is back to life on Monday. With the Indian Railways beginning to operate 200 trains in about 100 routes from Monday as part of Central government’s phased relaxations from the coronavirus lockdown across the country, the buzz of activity at all railway stations that the limited number of trains will pass through, has resumed. Out of the nine trains that the SCR is operating, eight will pass through the two Telugu states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The Telangana Express was the first train on Monday to leave from the city to Delhi.
Long queues were witnessed outside the Secunderabad Railway Station as passengers of this train and other services flocked to this major railway junction. Most of the passengers appeared to be migrants from other states who were reeling under the lockdown curbs and were anxious to go back to their home states.
As per the Indian Railways guidelines, passengers boarding any of the trains are expected to arrive at their respective stations about 90-120 minutes before the scheduled departure time. As a consequence, passengers were seen thronging the Secunderabad station from as early 6 am on Monday. People were seen maintaining physical distancing while patiently waiting in the serpentine queue lines which stretched upto a kilometre distance from the entrance of the railway station.
As many as 1.45 lakh passengers are expected to board their trains on the first day of resumption of passenger rail services on Monday. The Railways has allowed purchase of tickets in both online and through the booking counters at the railway stations.
Only those carrying a valid ticket are being allowed inside the stations after putting them through thermal screening as part of preventive measures against the spread of COVID-19. As per the guidelines, every passenger should mandatorily wear face masks during their entry into the railway stations and also during their travel.