A committee consisting of 5 Senior Administrative Grade Officers (Joint Secretary level) under the President ship of Chief Safety Officer, W. Rly, was formed to inquire into the incidence of stampede on north end FOB of Elphinstone Road Station on Mumbai Central – Dadar suburban section on 29/9/17. The enquiry committee issued public notice inviting members of public having knowledge relating to the incidence and any matter connected therewith and desiring to give evidence. The committee examined all the matters pertaining to the incidence including the evidence from the witnesses, the written statement of injured persons, Railway officials of Elphinstone road station and analysis of footages of all the CCTV cameras installed at the station including those located on the FOB.
The Committee concluded that the incident occurred due to sudden downpour of heavy rains and accumulation of commuters on FOB and stair case at around 10.00 hrs onwards on that date. The situation got further aggravated when one bundle of flowers of a vendor dropped followed by someone shouting that “Majha phool padla” and some commuters mistook the word “phool” for “pull”. This may have possibly triggered panic and led to stampede.
The committee also recommended certain short term and long term measures for Mumbai Suburban stations.
It is brought out that the issue of Notice Inviting Tender (NIT) for Elphinstone Road FOB took about 18 months. Railway Board has decided to constitute a high level expert committee to inquire into the reasons for delay in the whole process and suggest ways and means to ensure that such delays can be minimised in future. This committee would be headed by Shri Pratyush Sinha (Retd Chief Vigilance Commissioner) with Shri Vinayak Chatterjee, Chairman CII Economic Affairs council, and Shri Subodh Jain, (Retd Member Engineering , Railway Board) as Members and current Director Safety, Rly Board, Shri Pankaj Kumar as Member Secretary.