Indian Railways News

Indian Railways News

See List Of Trains That Will Start Running This Month

The Indian Railways authorities will restore some special train services from this month to ensure state-wise mobility and for the convenience of passengers. Several Indian Railways train services across the national transporter’s network were canceled due to a surge in COVID-19 cases amid the severity of the second wave of the pandemic in the country. The special train services come under the administration of the Northern Railways zone – headquartered in New Delhi. According to recent official updates from Northern Railways, passengers need to follow COVID-19 protocol during the journey.

According to the official circular issued by the Northern railway zone, the authorities have decided to resume the special train services across few routes of the zone. Some of these train services along with details of train number, routes, frequency are as follows:

  • Train Number 02433 will start from Chennai Central on June 18
  • Train Number 02055 will start from New Delhi on June 15
  • Train Number 02434 will start from H.Nizamuddin on June 16
  • Train Number 02056 will start from Dehradun on June 14
  • Train Number 02058 will start from Una Himachal on June 15
  • Train Number 02057 will start from New Delhi on June 14
  • Train Number 02402 will start from Dehradun on June 14
  • Train Number 02401 will start from Kota on June 15
  • Train Number 02039 will start from Kathgodam on June 14
  • Train Number 02264 will start from H.Nizamuddin on June 14
  • Train Number 02263 will start from Pune on June 15

Amid Covid Curbs, 27 Lakh Caught Without Ticket On Trains In 2020-21

Despite severe restrictions on entry at railway stations without confirmed tickets in view of the coronavirus pandemic, over 27 lakh people were caught travelling on trains ticketless in the last fiscal, an RTI query has revealed.

This was, however, less than 25 per cent of the number of cases recorded the previous financial year and that is attributable to the restrictions imposed to check the COVID-19 contagion, say officials.

The data made available by the Railway Board following an RTI query made by Madhya Pradesh-based activist Chandra Shekhar Gaur showed that between April 2020 and March 2021, 27.57 lakh people were caught travelling ticketless and ₹ 143.82 crore was levied as a fine from them.

In the 2019-2020 fiscal, 1.10 crore people were caught travelling ticketless and in total, a fine of ₹ 561.73 crore was realized from them.

“Traveling ticketless or with an unauthorised ticket is a long-standing challenge before the Indian Railways. On its part, the Railways makes informative, educative and punitive measures to discourage people from doing the same,” said Railway spokesperson D J Narain.

The 2020-2021 financial year was the period when the Railways ran the least number of passenger trains in its history due to the coronavirus pandemic and there were severe restrictions on the movement of people inside railway premises, including non-issuance of platform tickets.

It includes the lockdown period between April 14 and May 3 when the Railways was not operating any passenger trains except the Shramik Specials which started from May 1. These trains were run at the request of the state governments and the tickets were issued only to those authorised by the states.

In June last year, the Railways began running special trains and issued strict guidelines — e-ticketing through IRCTC website or through mobile App, no tickets booking at reservation counter, only passengers with confirmed tickets to be allowed entry at station and screening to be done before boarding with only asymptomatic passengers allowed to enter the train.

Fully waitlisted passengers and unreserved passengers were not allowed to travel on trains as the unreserved coaches were booked as reserved second sitting coaches to ensure that the necessary Covid-related protocols are followed.

“Accordingly, in line with these instructions, without ticket passengers at railway premises and trains were being identified and charged as part of normal as well as special ticket checking drives.

Unions Protest As Railways Considers Opening Its Stadiums For Commercial Use

The Indian Railways’ largest workers’ union has hit out at the Railway Board over its decision to hand over 15 of its stadiums to the Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) to conduct “techno-economic studies for commercial development”.

In a reply to a query in Parliament in March this year, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had said that the national transporter has identified 87 land parcels, 84 railway colonies, four hill railways and three stadiums for asset monetisation so far.

He said that the Railways has planned to monetise assets, including Dedicated Freight Corridors after commissioning, railway land parcels, railway colonies, hill railways and stadiums.

“The All India Railwaymen’s Federation (AIRF) is with the sentiments of lakhs of railwaymen, their families, children and sports persons since strong resentment and anguish is seen all over the Railway Fraternity against arbitrary decision of the Railway Board to handover the railway sports grounds/complex and stadiums to the RLDA for commercial development,” Shiva Gopal Mishra, President, AIRF, said in a letter to Railway Board Chairman Suneet Sharma.

In the letter, Mr Mishra said that the railway sports complexes or stadiums and indoor stadiums are located in the heart of various important cities and are being used by sportspersons and other sports enthusiasts, besides common railwaymen (serving and retired) since many decades.

“These stadiums and sports complexes/grounds are not surplus and unusable railway land, which can be handed over to anybody else,” it said.

The move from the ministry has also found stiff resistance from the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) earlier who had protested the handing over of their stadium to the RLDA.

The RLDA is in charge of generating revenue for the Railways by leasing out parcels of railway land. It is also engaged in developing major stations in partnership with private companies.

On the list are sports complexes at production units in Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli; Rail Coach Factory, Kapurthala; Rail Wheel Factory, Yelahanka, Bengaluru; Banaras Locomotive Works (formerly DLW), Varanasi; and Integral Coach Factory, Chennai.

The other facilities on the list belong to respective zonal railways – like the indoor stadium and cricket ground in Parel, Mumbai; a hockey stadium in Ranchi; and the sports complex at Mahalaxmi, Mumbai. The list also includes sports facilities in Gorakhpur, Patna, Lucknow, Secunderabad and Bhubaneswar.

3 Comments The RLDA has maintained that these stadiums will remain sporting facilities primarily but it will be accessed if they can be upgraded and at the same time opened up for commercial use by private parties.