“National Human Right Commission (NHRC) has directed the Metro Railway authorities to take necessary steps for setting up toilets at Metro stations and inside metro rakes so that the passengers’, especially elderly citizens and children do not face any problems.
Keeping in view the inconveniences faced by passengers while commuting by the Metro, the NHRC instructed the Metro Railway authorities to take necessary arrangements in this regard.
The NHRC in its letter to the Chairman of the Railway Board said that few lakh passengers regularly travel through the Metro railways and many of them face problems while travelling as there is no toilet inside the trains and metro stations. Inside the Kolkata Metro trains, while travelling a distance of about 25 km in 49 minutes, elderly people, women, children and patients face serious inconvenience due to non-availability of toilets.
Hence, the NHRC had urged Metro authorities to consider its proposal of setting up of toilets at metro stations with at the earliest.
On Thursday, Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, while visiting the city, said that they were already considering the setting up of toilets inside Metro stations. Metro railway officials in Kolkata, however, said that it is never easy to set up toilets inside trains or at stations, as there is no ventilation system inside the Metro tunnels and passengers will get a foul smell.
A senior metro official said that they would hold discussions with the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), urging them to set up public toilets outside all Metro stations. KMC will be asked to set up toilets within 50-100 meters from Metro stations.
Currently, there are KMC toilets outside 17 out of 24 Metro stations. It may be mentioned that two years ago, the Association for Protection of Democratic Rights had urged the NHRC to issue a direction to the Metro railways in this regard.
NHRC had accepted their pleas and after a consideration they had instructed the Metro Railways to set up toilets.