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His passion is adopting railway stations

Wednesday, October 31, 2018
Text & Pics by Shrikant Khuperkar

After cleaning up Kopar and Kalva, Sanjay Gupta has decided to adopt Navde station

Usually it is children or animals who get adopted, but this time it is the turn of a railway station. Sanjay Gupta, previously station manager of Kopar and Kalva stations, has been recently posted as chief commercial inspector in the Kalamboli goods division which covers Taloja, Navde Road, JNPT, Turbhe and Uran stations.

Of these, only Navde station doesn’t have any facility, and no station manager or booking clerk. That’s because it is only a halt station, where there are no facilities and a train only stops on request. But when the Railway Swachata Abhiyan was going on recently, Gupta decided to clean Navde station as well. With grass overgrowing the platform, it looked untidy and also was an attraction for snakes.

Seeking co-operation in his endeavour, Gupta met the principal and students of the nearby Mhatre College. As a result, the students, teachers and the railway staff succeeded in sprucing up Navde station in six days.

Gupta said, “I appreciate the help given by the college students and our railway staff in this. Now I have decided to adopt this station.”

One of the students who participated in the movement said that if each station manager took such an initiative, many problems of train commuters could be solved.
Gupta said that wherever he has been transferred, he has not waited for instructions from higher authorities. “I inform them and then just do it. I don’t wait for commuters to complain, but I take proactive measures.”

When Gupta was in charge of Kopar station a few years ago, an express train had derailed during the night on the Diva-Vasai route. He had himself gone to the site and ensured that passengers were rescued, taken to hospital, and all possible help was given to the other passengers. Gupta had been felicitated by the general manager of Central Railway at that time, but for him it is not about accolades or recognition.

“I just do what I feel is necessary for our government and our passengers,” he said.

At Kalva station, he had solved the issue of hawkers thronging the platforms by co-ordinating with the RPF and GRP, and setting up CCTV cameras. Many new ticket windows were also opened on both east and west sides, for regular and season tickets.

“I don’t like to sit in one place for a long time; I am a moving person,” said Gupta.

For commuters whose life is all about moving, he is the right person in the right place.

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