Archive for the ‘Trains and Buses’ Category

Churchgate Station Turns 50

Churchgate Station turns 50 years this month. The station is the rail head for the Western Railway commuter line and has many firsts to its credits.

  • It was the country’s first local network to run on AC-DC currents;
  • It had the first pedestrian subway
  • The world’s first ladies special was operated from here.

Churchgate station, which caters to lakhs of people daily, is set to celebrate its Golden Jubilee. An exhibition of old photographs, postcards and literature depicting history and heritage of the station will be held from June 4 to 9. [link]

Other interesting facts about the station

  • The building was inaugurated in 1957 by then union Railway Minister Jagjivan Ram;
  • There were 152 up and 144 down locals from Churchgate in 1957. Today there are 427 and 420 respectively
  • The building came up after well-known architect firm Gregson, Baitley and King proposed a new station building in 1925. It was completed in 1957.

Image Copyrights

UPDATE: Thanks Dini for the correction. I have uploaded the correct photograph.

Jackass DNA Advertising

Find anything wrong in this advertisement ?? It’s stupid of them to show a man walking on the railway tracks. Hundreds of people die every year trying to do so, and this advertisement just shows that its cool to do so. How about some social responsibility DNA??

Click here for the actual article in print

Capture a Pothole

DNA India, the newspaper has a very interest public service endeavor. Click a picture of a pothole in the city and email it to them and they will document and pass on the info to the relevant authority. Something on the lines of citizen journalism followed by various media companies.

DNA writes

Send us pictures of potholes and we’ll take up the case with BMC’s Road Monitoring Committee. Don’t forget to mention the exact location of the pothole and the number of the nearest lamp-post.

Mail us on dnaspeakup@gmail.com

What;’s in A Cab !!

Well, its seems that these days we Mumbaikers have a choice of four types of taxis.

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Read the entire story here

B.E.S.T is world best

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These giant mean machines are a common site on Mumbai roads. They can be seen literally in almost every single street of Mumbai. Our city has one of the best public transportation. If local train is the heart of the city public transport. Then B.E.S.T is the artery that pumps blood into the heart.
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Train Driver Forgets To Stop At Kandivili

I came across an article in the Mid-Day today informing about one particular motorman on the Western Railway, who was so busy talking to his pals, that he forgot to stop at a station.

This one incident brings about a whole lot of issues that can become catastrophic if left to fester.

Firstly, why should railway employees ride in the motorman’s cabin. Can they not like all other human beings ride like sardines in regular compartment, or even in first class. But not in the motorman’s cabin.

Secondly, the motorman has no excuse to say that he was distracted and hence forgot to stop. What if there was a train ahead and he had led his rake into a rear-end or headlong collission ?

And lastly, why did the Automatic Warning System not work and stop the train immediately ??

Finally a thought for the poor hapless passengers. What if I was on that train and had a ticket to Kandivili. And now since the train didn’t stop, and I land up at Borivili. And the TC catches me and fines me for ticketless travel ? Who is to blame.

Damn u motorman, you spoilt my day. Therefore I don’t travel by train. Motorbike it is.

And I digress before I conclude.

Disclaimer: I remember travelling once in the engine room of a train. But that was on long distance trains. From Karjat to Lonavala. And believe me it was one of the best experiences of train travel. If you don’t believe me ask my pal Homiar who was with me !

Gift # 7: Indian Railways

Over the past few days Metroblogging cities have been posting about unique gifts that their city has given to the world. This is in the spirit of the holiday season and gift-giving which ensues in most parts of the world. In the same vein, we start our series. The countdown will go in reverse till we reach Gift #1. Note that they are not in any priority of importance, rather just gifts that India’s greatest city has to offer. Earlier posts are here

If you have been to India, you have experienced Indian Railways. The largest rail network system in the world, moving the most number of passengers, it is uniquely and truly India.

One cannot experience India without ever having travelled by Indian Railways. In Bombay, it is all the more so, because we have one of the busiest and biggest suburban rail network in terms of passenger load.

So where did all this start?

Way back in 1854, the tracks were laid from Bombay to a distant suburb called Thane. The first passenger train pulled out of Bori Bunder on April 16, 1854 and chugged a distance of 34 km to Thane. Thus was born the era of passenger rail in India. [link]

The birthplace of passenger rail evolved into India’s grandest railway terminus and arguably one of the most amazing railway structures in the world. Called the Victoria Terminus, or V.T. it has become the icon of Indian Railway and also of the city of Bombay itself.

Image credits: Rahul Megharaj Email: rahul.meg@gmail.com

So the next time you travel by rail in India, remember where it all started. A gift from Mumbai to India and the world.

“Where In Bombay Do You Stay?”

errr, i live (not stay) in south bombay, thanks for asking.

it might be patently obvious even to those who ask the right questions for the first 5 minutes of a conversation. fine. i’ll admit it myself: i talk the talk, i live in a skyscraper, i went to “those schools”, i went abroad to get an undergraduate degree, i strive to speak impeccable english (and most often succeed in doing so), and i truly consider going anywhere beyond parel an anxiety-fraught schlep that in many cases is not worth the travel time.

but being “from somewhere” is really not a crime, people. especially not south bombay. and don’t make me feel guilty or naive for it. it’s the life i know, the life i am comfortable with, and you cannot tell me that the “true bombay” is in the burbs, and that i should make the trek out more often, because

1) who the heck are you to define the “real” city? every window in a metropolis has a story, so don’t presume to tell me that another story is more valid than mine, or another area more “real”
2) have you SEEN the roads in andheri? and the traffic? why would i subject myself to this kind of torture on a more regular basis?!
3) infiniti mall is really. not. that. impressive. landmark books in infiniti mall, yes, resoundingly so, but infiniti mall itself? errr…. no.
4) even though bombay may be a safer city than most others for women, i still don’t feel comfortable travelling on trains after dark.
5) the buses have cockroaches (i speak specifically of the A-2 A/C bus, which although it is a great service, is not one i could use every day), and dude, seijo and the soul dish has cockroaches, too.
6) the dust i’m exposed to when i travel to the burbs ruins my skin. no, i’m not saying all of south bombay breathes clean air and drinks ambrosia out of pearl cups, but you have to admit — it’s simple science — that being out on the road for longer exposes you to traffic fumes for a longer period. (and no, the A/C bus is not my sole method of transportation, so it is a matter of concern to me.)
7) who’s to say that with quality spots like the bombay gymkhana, salt water grill, indigo, moshe’s, barista, bade miyan, ming palace, regal, basilico, colaba causeway, the tasting room, trattoria, nature’s basket, gaylord, theobroma, cafe churchill, inox, pizzeria uno (or whatever they’re calling it these days), mondy’s, the ghetto, new yorker and cream center, bachelor’s, prive, polly esther’s, noodle bar, atria mall, and the new china garden (dim sum, yum yum!) to choose from, i really *need* to go exploring?

i’m quite happy where i am, thank you — and be it said, in public now, that i don’t feel the need to apologize either for my origins or for my choices.

Ventilated Local Trains

It is only me, or do you also think that this is not such a great idea in the larger scenario….

after January 2007, when new coaches to maintain oxygen levels in compartments, will arrive in the city. These coaches, made for the first time in India, will pump in fresh air with the help of four blowers at both ends of a coach. This air will enter compartments through eight points in the ceiling. [ link ]

Agreed, that ventilation in the bogies is necessary and will be good for all of us passengers.

But trying to put these blowers on the same design of train cars is self defeating. The bogey design needs a complete revamp and ventilation should be integrated into it. Just shoving it at the top is not the smartest thing to do.

What next ? Additional kerosene engines on the top of CNG cabs to make them go faster on the bridges ??

Impotent Politician

In light of the recent blasts just a month ago, todays Mid-Day front page says it all.

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When the assholes have to keep their mouths shut they talk non-stop. And now when they do need to talk…..

Aarrrrrrgh. Didnt someone say that people get the politicians they deserve. Sad on us !!

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