Common citizens have not been allowed so far to travel in suburban trains given the COVID-19 outbreak.

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) leaders on Monday travelled in local trains, currently available only for essential services staff, as part of a protest to demand that the services be made available for common citizens also.

The Raj Thackeray-led party undertook the “savinay kaydebhang (civil disobedience) protest after its repeated demands to allow the general public to travel in local trains in Mumbai and suburbs.

Also Read | Will let lawyers travel on locals on experimental basis, State tells HC

Common citizens have not been allowed so far to travel in suburban trains given the COVID-19 outbreak.

At present, only certain sections, including the essential services staff and government employees, are allowed to travel in local trains.

MNS general secretary Sandeep Deshpande in a video message said the Maharashtra government has allowed common people to travel by state transport (ST) buses to reach their work places, but not in local trains, which is “ironical“.

“We requested the government several times to allow common people to travel in local trains as they face hardships while travelling in ST buses which consumes a lot of their time,” he said in the video clip, in which he could be seen travelling in a local train with some other party leaders.

Also Read | State urges Centre to restart local trains

The government must be thinking that coronavirus does not spread in buses, but in local trains, Deshmukh quipped.

“Hence, we staged the protest by travelling in local trains,” he said.

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