New Delhi, Oct 24 :
With Chhath Puja to be celebrated from Oct 27-29, the Indian Railways is making extra efforts to accommodate the hundreds of people heading home for the festival and ran an extra train to Patna Friday, said officials.
“In view of the burgeoning crowds waiting to head home to celebrate Chhath, the Northern Railways today (Friday) ran an extra train from Anand Vihar station to Patna,” Neeraj Sharma, chief public relations officer of Northern Railways, told IANS.
According to Sharma, the railways has made extra provisions for the entire festival season, that started at the end of September beginning with Navratri, Eid, Dussehra, Diwali and now for Chhath.
Railways is running around 160 extra trains for the entire festival season that ends Nov 10. This includes weekly and daily trains. During the entire festival season, the railways is expected to make some 3,000 trips, said Sharma.
The Northern Railways has also added 130 extra coaches.
“Senior officials are personally monitoring all the arrangements during the festival season to ensure everything goes off without any hitch,” he added.
The Northern Railways has also added 25 extra booking counters at the stations in Delhi to help with faster daily reservation of tickets.
The officials are also keeping watch for touts and some 55 touts have been caught so far, he said.
The festival season has witnessed a 30-40 percent increase in passengers, said Sharma.
Friday, there was 30 percent increase in passenger traffic.
Chhath is celebrated six days after Diwali. It is dedicated to the sun god, and is one of Bihar’s most popular festivals.