The Indian Railways on Thursday cancelled all regular trains scheduled to run between July 1 and August 12 amid rising coronavirus cases in the country. The special trains running since May 12 and the 100 pairs of mail and express trains plying since June 1 will continue to operate. The passengers will get refunds for the cancelled trains.

The limited number of special suburban train in Mumbai – meant to transport workers engaged in essential activities – will also continue to run, the railways said.

Public transport was abruptly banned in March, when the countrywide restrictions were first imposed.

The government had begun 200 special trains from June 1, a day after the fourth phase of the nationwide lockdown to control the coronavirus ended. In May, the Centre had also started 15 pairs of special trains to and from New Delhi. Passengers were screened before boarding and directed to take all necessary precautions while travelling. The railways also stopped providing linen and food to the passengers.

Domestic flights resumed on May 25. With “Unlock 1”, the government also removed restrictions on inter-state movement.

India is witnessing an alarming increase in the number of coronavirus cases. On Thursday, the country reported a record 16,922 new cases, taking the overall count to 4,73,105. In India, 14,894 people have died of the coronavirus while 2.7 lakh people have recovered so far. Delhi has over 73,000 cases while Maharashtra’s count has reached 1,47,741.

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