Nearly 800 passengers are stranded at Guwahati railway station, unable to proceed to destinations in Upper Assam as local trains to Upper and lower Assam were cancelled on Saturday.
Sudhir Kumar Singh from Muzaffarpur has been stranded for four days, after arriving on Wednesday evening. Singh, his wife and son were headed to Dibrugarh but could not find room on Friday’s special train. “Around 40 people from Bihar went back as they could not proceed to destinations in Upper Assam,” he said.
Similar was the situation with Mamata Devi and Mahesh Rai and their families, also from Muzaffarpur, as they could not proceed to Simaluguri, near Sivasagar.
German tourist Joergen Kueller arrived at Guwahati airport from Delhi on Friday and made his way to the station on an ASTC bus but could not proceed to Simaluguri for onward travel to Nagaland. Having spent the night at the station, Kueller was happy to learn that his ticket for Brahmaputra Mail was still valid as the train finally left on Saturday.
Northeast Frontier Railway operated two special passenger trains to Dibrugarh and Dimapur on Friday, while the Up Brahmaputra Mail and Rajdhani Express left in the evening, according to station director Paresh Kalita.
Some long-distance trains like Sampark Kranti Express, Saraighat Express and Avadh Assam Express operated.
Kalita said food and water was available at food stalls inside the station. “Two city buses operated to the ISBT (inter-state bus terminus) and LGBI Airport, providing transport to locals stuck at the station,” he added.
The Harekrishna Movement supplied food for around 2,000 stranded people at the station on Saturday.
Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad (AJYCP) activists blocked trains near Maligaon from 11am to noon.
Passengers were also stranded at Dimapur station.
NFR authorities announced the cancellation of at least 28 long and short-distance trains for Saturday and Sunday.
Almost all major long-distance trains were either cancelled or short-terminated. NFR sources said a special train left for Silchar in Barak Valley on Saturday evening.
NFR chief public relations officer Subhanan Chanda said the Tinsukia-Naharlagun Intercity Express has been cancelled till Sunday, while the Silchar-New Delhi Poorvottar Sampark Kranti Express has been cancelled till Monday. The Lumding-Tinsukia passenger train is cancelled till Sunday. Most of the local trains running in Assam, barring Barak Valley, and in Tripura, have been temporarily suspended. Services in Tripura have been restored and most of the trains are operating, according to NF Railway sources.
Additional reporting by Satananda Bhattacharjee in Hailakandi