Western Railway will restore full operations of the suburban train services from 29 January, with 1,367 trains running on slow and fast tracks from Friday moving away from its away restricted services, according to reports. Central Railway will also operate 1,685 local train services from Friday.

Western Railway currently runs only 1,201 local train services and the Central Railway runs 1,580 services a day.

The order follows a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday to discuss the opening of local train services to all commuters, according to Mumbai Mirror. “Western Railway has decided to start all its suburban services by increasing existing 1,201 special services to 1,367 from Friday, 29 January,” a statement by Western Railway said.

All commuters, however, will not allowed to travel in the suburban trains, according to a Times Now report. Railway authorities also urged travellers to adhere to all guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) related to COVID-19 during the boarding, travel and at the destination.

Currently, only essential services workers are allowed to use locals on both Western and Central lines. However, women and lawyers are allowed free access during off-peak hours. The services were stopped in March last year as coronavirus cases rose, before resuming partially in July.

While the daily ridership of local trains on the Central and Western lines is 20 lakh, over 80 lakh people used ride Mumbai’s local trains before the lockdown imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19.

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