Many trains were cancelled by the Railways due to the violence spreading across India in the wake of Dera Sacha Sauda’s chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh being convicted of rape. Labourers Samrat and Shafiqul Islam, who work in Jammu, reached Delhi in the early hours of Friday from their hometown in Malda, West Bengal heading north. Just like always they hoped to catch the train to Jammu but due to the violence, they could not do so. As per the Indian Express report, on Saturday over 300 trains were cancelled as the duo prepared to spend another night at the platform. But they were not alone.
Several other commuters travelling to Haryana, Punjab and Jammu, mostly labourers were left stranded at the station clueless and confused. The only thing these stranded people knew was that the situation was not only causing them discomfort but also affecting their livelihood.
Somewhere near sat Srija Devi with her husband and two children. They work at Rajpura Mandi and were hoping to reach Ambala. She said,”We booked our ticket from Unchahar (UP). When we heard the train wouldn’t reach, we tried to get it cancelled. But at the ticket counter we were reassured we would reach and now we are stuck.” She added,”My husband is ill, I don’t know how we will manage.”
While the announcements were being made about trains getting cancelled, Bheem Pradhan, an agricultural labourer in a village near Nakodar, Punjab, said,”I’m just worried that every day I don’t work, I’m losing my wage.” Just then, Devi’s husband had an epileptic attack. Everyone around her urged her to take him to a hospital but Devi refused as Delhi is an unfamiliar city to her. She said,”Just let us go to Ambala.”