Mumbai : Suburban services on Mumbai’s Western Railway line took a hit Friday as over 100 motormen – as drivers of these trains are called – went on a flash strike by taking mass sick leave to press for better facilities and security, an official said.
The striking motormen demanded appointment of assistant motormen so that they do not have to work overtime. They also demanded better security.
The main suburban railway station of Churchgate in south Mumbai saw unprecedented crowds as people started gathering, owing to lack of train services – which usually run one every five minutes.
The strike started only a couple of hours before the peak travelling time that starts around 6 p.m. as commuters start for home after work hours.
Meanwhile, Western Railway officials have started a meeting with the striking motormen and are negotiating their terms and conditions.
“We will try to resolve their issues and have them resume work immediately,” a Western Railway official said.
Western Railway management has also started making alternate arrangements and deployed non-striking motormen with extra shifts.
Most local railway stations, however, were alerting commuters with announcements on public address system that the trains are either running late or have been cancelled.