Chirayinkil (CRY): The railway passengers in Chirayinkeezhu may use the NOTA option this time in the Lok Sabha election as a mark of protest against the failure of all major political fronts to persuade the Railway authorities to allot stops for certain trains passing through the Chirayinkeezhu railway station.
According to commuters, Chirayinkeezhu railway station is well ahead of many other railway stations under Thiruvananthapuram Railway Division in terms of collection and number of passengers.
However, the passengers complain that the station had not got its fair share in terms of development and train stops. They blamed the MPs of both LDF and UDF who represented the constituency over the years, for the neglect.
The commuters have erected two flex boards on the platforms of Chirayinkezhu station.
“Why should the railway passengers from Chirayinkeezhu vote?” is the question on one flex board. Another flex board says that no development had taken place in the station for the last 15 years. The flex board claims that during this period though the total number of train services in Kerala had tripled only one train stop was allotted to Chirayinkeezhu.
According to commuters, in the last three months more than 50 new train stops were sanctioned in Kerala, but Chirayinkeezhu was ignored by the railway authorities.
Other long-pending demands of Chirayinkeezhu like overbridge are remaining a dream.
Even the temporary stops to trains which were sanctioned during the ‘Kaliyoot’ festival at Sarkara temple were withdrawn. As the Chirayinkeezhu- Kaniyapuram road has been included in the nationalised category, private buses are not allowed to operate on the route adding to the travails of commuters. According to the commuters, one-third of the more than 10,000 passengers depend on Chirayinkeezhu station for travelling between Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam and other far-off places.
The commuters who have erected the flex boards do believe in democracy and so insist that every passenger should vote.
Their message to the voters of Chirayinkeezhu is that they should press the NOTA button to cast their votes in protest.
However, the response from the political parties was quick.
The flex board on the first platform disappeared overnight and the second was destroyed the other day.
But the photographs of the flex boards are already a hit on social networks adding to the heartbeats of the candidates.