It’s as if time stood still at Cantonment railway station here, since the Madras Railway Company opened the Jolarpet–Bangalore Cantonment Branch Line in 1864. The station, with just two platforms, retains the quaintness of a colonial structure, suddenly springing to life only when it’s time for the arrival or departure of a train.
The situation here is a far cry from that in its bustling counterparts at Majestic, Yeshwantpur, K.R. Puram and Kengeri.
Yet again, the station found no mention in the Railway budget presented last week, and several commuter issues remain unaddressed.
The most recent improvement work taken up at the station include installation of signage and display boards, opening of a food plaza, renovation of waiting area and making available a battery operated car for passengers with physical disabilities.
However, the biggest problem is the difficulty in going from one platform to the other. Unlike the City station where escalators were recently introduced, there is only a skywalk with steep stairs here.
Its fate is similar to that of others in the city — while using it is out of the question for senior citizens and those with physical disabilities, most able-bodied passengers too choose not to use it. People can be seen crossing the tracks to reach the other platform, despite the risks involved.
Devanbu, driver of the battery-operated car, patiently waits for passengers. He says around 15 senior citizens and people with physical disabilities use the two-month-old facility every day. He points out that the car is available only on platform two, which is meant for departures. Those arriving on platform one are left to fend for themselves. Anil Kumar Agarwal, divisional railway manager, Bangalore division, South Western Railway, says there is a plan to introduce a trolley pathway for people to change platforms.
There is also a proposal to build two shelter bays on platform two. “Also, the height of platform two will be increased as it is lower than the standard height,” he adds. Readers may send us their views and suggestions to our Twitter account (https://twitter.com/BloreConnect) or Facebook account (www.facebook.com/BloreConnect).