Railways to make disabled-friendly stations

PATNA: The Railway Board on Monday reiterated the railways’ commitment to convert railway stations falling under category A1, A and B into disabled friendly stations.

Work is currently on to identify more such stations in each zone of the railways. The railways is converting all major stations into disabled friendly stations in the current fiscal, a board official said. Under the ongoing plan, the Railway Board has decided to provide 100 escalators at 50 major stations of religious and historical importance at the country level . Patna Junction has been selected as one such station to be developed as an ideal station for physically challenged persons, a Board official said.

According to an East Central Railway (ECR) official, Patna Junction is being developed as a disabled friendly station. The railways has so far provided special facilities for the physically challenged persons at this station. They include facilities like separate booking counter, parking, waiting hall and toilets for the disabled persons at Patna Junction. Access ramps too have been provided at Patna Junction for the disabled while boarding trains here, he said.

The railways has taken various steps to improve facilities for the disabled at each major station under the Danapur division of ECR. Keeping in view the basic requirements of disabled persons who travel most of the time alone, the railways has already provided “May I Help You” booth on platform no. 1 at Patna Junction to render assistance to them in any emergency, the official said.

According to sources, the railways has selected about 1,500 stations which would be developed as “disabled friendly” stations across the country. It has also decided to build more access ramps at different stations under the ECR and reserve parking slots for them in the circulating areas. Low height water taps for the physically challenged passengers at all major stations under the ECR are being provided on platforms to fulfil their needs, the sources said .

It may be recalled that railways recently introduced disabled-friendly coaches in most of major mail and express trains for their convenience the sources said.

According to Danapur PRO R K Singh, the railways has provided non-slippery walkway and special signage for the physically challenged and visually impaired passengers at Patna Junction, he said adding railways would convert all major stations into disabled friendly stations.

Source: TOI

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