First AC train from New Delhi to arrive on Thursday

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As many as 921 people from Karnataka, who were stranded in various places in north India, will arrive in Bengaluru on Thursday in the first special train train to the State from New Delhi. The air-conditioned train is expected to pull into KSR City Railway Station around 6.30 a.m.

As the national capital has been badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, elaborate arrangements have been made by South Western Railways, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and the health department to screen passengers.

SWR Divisional Railway Manager (Bengaluru) Ashok Kumar Verma told The Hindu that in order to ensure that social distancing norms are being followed, no visitor will be allowed inside the railway campus. “Family members of passengers have been given strict instructions to not come to the station. We have deployed around 130 staff, including Railway Protection Force (RPF) personnel. In addition, BBMP and other departments will also deploy staff,” he said.

One booth per coach has been set up to screen passengers. “We have booked 4,500 rooms in four different categories of hotels for their institutional quarantine. Health teams have been deputed at the station; 30 BMTC buses will ferry the passengers to hotels of their choice,” said civic Commissioner B.H. Anil Kumar.

A senior BBMP official told The Hindu that they had formed 15 teams for thermal screening. “After screening, people will have to avail the quarantine facility as per their requirements. Based on their selection, we will ferry them to their chosen quarantine centres keeping in mind all precautionary measures,” he said

More than 1,100 people started their journey from Delhi in the train, but some people disembarked midway. “Nobody will be allowed to board the train at stations en-route. Once the train enters the Karnataka border, the journey will culminate in the city,” Mr. Verma added.

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