Pune: Troubles in the Pune-Daund Diesel Electrical Mechanised Unit (DEMU) service seem to be increasing, as on Friday morning, passengers were gripped with panic when smoke was noticed near the wheels of one of the coaches.
The incident occurred at about 7 am, when the train was at Patas on its way to Pune. Bystanders, who noticed the smoke, started shouting and passengers started evacuating the coach while the train was still moving.
Premsukh Katariy, President, Pune-Daund Pravasi Sangh, has filed a complaint with the railway authority regarding this.
“The DEMU departed from Daund at 7.05 am. When it approached Patas, smoke was seen from the wheel of one of the coaches. This is unsafe for passengers, please don’t send the DEMU and give us conventional rakes,” the complaint filed by the group stated.
Pune-Daund Pravasi Sangh also said that the old rakes had a greater capacity. The group said it has been demanding re-introduction of old rakes for the past two months, claiming that the DEMU service is insufficient to cater to increased traffic between Pune and Daund during peak hours.
“All our requests to the General Manager, Central Railway, have fallen on deaf ears and hence we are left with no option but to stage protests. The capacity that DEMU holds is 1,700 out of which only 1,081 can sit. A conventional rake can accommodate 2,400 passengers,” said Vikas Deshpande, a railway activist, who is also a member of the Zonal Railway Users’ Consultative Committee (ZRUCC).
In response, Krishnath Patil, Senior Divisional Commercial Manager, Pune, said, “The matter has been forwarded to the headquarters. A proposal as per the suggestions has been forwarded to headquarters for consideration. Upon approval for the same, conventional rakes will be provided in place of DEMU.”