It was raining outside, I was in the local train and I had to get off at Bandra station, which was the next stop. It was my first time in Mumbai. I was crammed in the train corridor, standing, as there was no place to sit and I was carrying a bag on my shoulders. A fellow passenger commented, “You are not going to make it with the luggage. It’s rush hour.”
I was aware of the dangers faced by people travelling in Mumbai Local Trains, especially at rush hours and I was a little scared. The passenger’s comment increased my fear. I remembered a news article I’d read a few years ago about a stampede in Bandra station which killed 23 people and injured 39 others.
The train started to retard and my heart began to race, I could already hear a loud buzz of the crowd waiting at the station. Now I could see some people rushing inside the train even before it had halted. I felt a strong push on my back as people inside the train rushed to get out so I had to jump out of the moving train and my forward foot slipped because the platform was wet due to rain and I fell down. A throng of people was still getting in and I was in their way, lying on the floor. I heard loud footfalls and felt vibrations from the floor as I lay there trying to get up but failing because people kept walking over me.
The sound of the rain
Blotted out now and then
By bangs of footfalls.