Indian Railways News

Direct train between Tiruvallur and Tambaram for quicker, cosier commute

For 29-year-old M Monisha, the toughest part of the daily commute from her home in Avadi to her office in Mambalam is not inside the crowded train. It starts after she gets down at Chennai Central to walk through an ill-lit subway across the Poonamalee High Road to the Park station and catch another crowded train to Mambalam. During monsoon, it becomes worse due to water-logging.

Every day, residents who commute from the western suburbs to the southern fringes of the city have to change trains at Chennai Central because there are no direct EMU services linking Chennai’s two most-patronised suburban lines — Tiruvallur-Chennai and Chennai-Tambaram — despite a link at Chennai Beach. But this is set to change as the Chennai division of Southern Railway is mulling a ‘through service’ during peak hours from Tiruvallur to Tambaram via Chennai Beach. The provision was discussed on the sidelines of a Divisional Rail Users Consultative Committee (DRUCC) meet on January 31. Officials said around 60,000 people, almost 20% of the total number of passengers on the section, travel from western suburbs like Avadi, Tiruninravur and Tiruvallur to areas Guindy, Adambakkam and Tambaram.

Railways could not do this until now because on the Tambaram section 12-car EMU trains are run, while on the Tiruvallur section nine-car EMUs are operated. But divisional engineers have completed extending platforms at more than 30 stations on the Tiruvallur section to run 12-car trains. At least four 12-car rakes are on their way to Chennai to be run on the Tiruvallur section, said a senior official. However, railway officials are yet to decide on the schedule of these direct services which sources said would be finalised after accounting for operational constraints.

The completion of the quadrapuling project on the Beach-Washermanpet section could be a roadblock though. “But a few trial services can be run even in current scenario,” a top official said.

The move comes at a time when higher bus fares have pushed intracity commuters to train services, something reflected in the increase in the number of season tickets sold by the railways. With increase in number of coaches and through services.

Passenger associations have welcomed the move for a through train. “I can travel on the same train from without getting down at Beach or Central to interchange to Park,” said 44-year-old John Charles, who travels from Pattabiram to Chetpet every day. “There is a direct bus, but it takes almost 20 minutes more depending on the traffic. Commuters are also exposed to dust pollution too,” said John, adding that women’s safety is a concern in the city’s buses.

While direct buses are not available between the western and southern suburbs, services connect Avadi to T Nagar. But given the long travel time, some commuters said they preferred trains to buses.

Retired Railway Staff to add Steam to North Western Railway

At a time when the youth have been left high and dry waiting for their dream jobs, North Western Railway (NWR) has decided to dole out jobs to its not-so-young staff, that is, its retired employees.

It has decided to re-engage its retired employees in the Jaipur division, and up for grabs is a whopping 1,061 positions. This is being done under the new re-engagement policy of the railways.

Sources said that the situation has arisen in the railways as the positions are lying vacant and no initiative has been taken to fill them up.

In fact, there has been no recruitment for class III and IV that is conducted by the Railway Recruitment Board (RRB).

Of these positions which are to be filled, 748 positions are of track man itself which is considered an important position. Its shocking to note how the NWR’s Jaipur division had been working with so many positions of track man lying vacant.

The other positions which will be filled up with the retired staff include ticket examiner, station master, goods guard, personnel in the electric division and mechanical division; there are requirements in signalling too.

Few days back, in a samwad programme was held in Jaipur and the ticket checkers had demanded more people in their unit when they had met the division’s commercial manager .

The re-engagement is being done in accordance with a letter issued by the railway board in October and in December 2017.

Subsequently, the headquarters of railways had also sent an official letter regarding the re-engagement policy in December itself.

However, there are certain conditions which will be followed under this re-engagement policy of railways.The scheme of re-engagement of retired staff will be valid till December 1, 2019, or 65 years of age, whichever is earlier.  This means that retired employees above the age of 65 will not be eligible.

Railways & the Raj: How the Age of Steam Transformed India’ review: Engines of Change

India’s railways carry eight billion passengers a year, and a billion tonnes of freight; the 42,000 route miles cover all kinds of terrain, and the trains run through weather which is often violent in many ways. The railways have also played, and still play, a transformative role in almost every aspect of Indian life, and Christian Wolmar tells this very complex story easily and directly.

In the early 1850s, the then Governor-General, Lord Dalhousie, saw the railways as an asset in his gigantic yet thorough plan to extend British power. He thought that the railways would encourage enterprise, expand production, aid the discovery and exploitation of natural resources, and even help social progress — and that they would also strengthen British rule. The main objector, the East India Company, which had a near-monopoly on colonial trade in India, gave way.

Subsidy route

Yet in an age when the idea of the state as a major economic actor was almost unimaginable, the problem was that of attracting British railway companies to undertake the immense projects involved. The companies finally agreed to a compromise; the colonial government guaranteed a return of 5% on their investment, when the current lending rate was 3%. Moreover, taxpayers in India — colonials and Indians — carried the risk, while shareholders in Britain got the ‘profits’. Only two of the lines thus constructed broke even, and the guarantees eventually cost the government of India about £50 million, while moderately wealthy people in Britain bought railway shares for the guaranteed returns. The companies became what Wolmar calls subsidy junkies; the government eventually took over many lines, and the writer acerbically notes the similarities to today’s public-private partnerships, or private finance initiatives in their British avatar. The tight central procedures — despite the lack of control on actual project costs — and the absence of a white-collar criminal class, however, meant that corruption was lower than it had been on U.S. railroads, even if the procedures also spawned India’s bureaucracy.

The initial lines were laid in eastern India and inland from Bombay; the eastern line had to bridge colossal rivers, and the western one involved steep climbs and tunnels across the Western Ghats. Conditions for the workers — large numbers of whom were brought by brokers from far across India — were terrible, and about 25,000 died on the ghats project.

British overseers were openly racist, and readily adopted casteist generalisations about the workforce, though some of them learnt that local timbers and certain local techniques were best for the conditions. Some even learnt from the contractor Jamsetji Dorabji, who earned his workers’ trust, and also — possibly because he was illiterate — had a prodigious memory. Most strikingly too, the ghats line was built by Alice Tredwell, who took over when her contractor husband Solomon died after a month in India.

Racist approach

India’s technical advantage in entering the railway age two decades after the industrial powers did not last, but by the late 19th century the railways were an integral part of imperial India, despite the problems caused by a multitude of gauges, owners, and company systems. Wolmar covers life and work on the railways, and much else until and including today, with examples both appalling and entertaining. In the early days, third-class passengers were locked into bare and windowless steel wagons; the railways helped spread cholera and plague, and even elite Indian passengers started criticising conditions in third class. Yet the poorer passengers, as Wolmar shows, subsidised the richer ones and helped British profits.

Unpleasant journey

All passengers, though, had to face their own demons over shared trains and stations; the Calcutta High Court judge Sir Asutosh Mukherjee awoke in a lower berth to find that a Britisher in the upper berth had thrown his slippers out of the window — but when the colonial could not find his own jacket Sir Asutosh told him the jacket had gone to look for the slippers.

Some ambitions were not realised; freight was one of Dalhousie’s original concerns but never grew as he thought it would, and was also a magnet for corruption after Independence; the north-western lines, built in fear of Russian expansion, were a huge waste of money, in what looks like an early form of the military-industrial complex. The railways served only partly to move troops to where they might be needed in possible rebellions, and their record in famine relief was also patchy. The Indian nationalists, for their part, distrusted the railways for extending British power, for reshaping aspects of Indian society, and — as the author shows — for restricting India’s economic development. Yet all Indians accepted the iron road; Wolmar adds, ‘In no other country is the railway so indelibly connected with the image of the nation.’

Western Railway may run an extra DEMU train between Indore and Ratlam

Railways has planned to run an extra DEMU train between Indore and Ratlam stations. The Divisional Railway Manager of Ratlam Division on Sunday said that they were expecting to receive rake of a DEMU train, which is being run on Ratlam and Mathura rail section. “The rake is expected to be freed from the Ratlam-Mathura section in the second week of February.

We have requested for the rake to run an extra DEMU train between Indore and Ratlam railway stations,” said DRM Sunkar.

The DRM said the plan is to fulfil the demand of passengers for an additional DEMU train service between Indore and Ratlam during early morning and late in the evening.

Sunkar had come to Indore to inspect the railway station. “We are also planning to set up a stabling line between platform 1 and 2 of the station,” he said, adding that it will be for parking engines and trains with less number of coaches at the station.

The railways had earlier announced to develop a garden on this vacant space but after finding the need of a stabling line at the station it was changed.

Sunkar also issued instructions to officials concerned to start escalator facility at the station at the earliest. “Indore has always been the most important station of the division, and efforts are being made for provision of best class passenger amenities at the station,” he said.

Officials are also identifying areas, which are not in use, on the station’s premises. “The vacant space will be identified and developed in a manner so that they can be utilised for passengers’ interest,” he said.

Speaking about expansion of Dr Ambedkar Nagar railway station, the DRM said that they were waiting for land acquisition process. “The expansion project would be executed as soon as we get the land,” he said.

WR announces Major Block between Vaitarna–Safale Stations on Sunday for Launching of Girder on Bridge No.99

A major block has been taken from 11.20 hrs to 14.50 hrs on Up line and from 11.20 hrs to 13.50 hrs. on Down  line between Vaitarna – Safale stations on Sunday,  4th February, 2018  for launching of  girder on bridge no. 99. Due to this following train will be cancelled/Short terminated:-

Train Cancelled (Down Direction) :-

  • 59039 Virar – Valsad Passenger
  • 93015 Churchgate – Dahanu Road EMU
  • 93017 Virar – Dahanu Road EMU
  • 93019 Virar-  Dahanu Road EMU
  • 93021 Virar- Dahanu Road EMU

Train Cancelled (Up Direction ) :-

  • 93014 Dahanu Road – Virar EMU
  • 93016 Dahanu Road – Churchgate EMU
  • 93018 Dahanu Road -Virar EMU
  • 93024 Dahanu Road – Virar EMU
  • 59046 Valsad – Bandra Terminus Passenger

Trains to be  short  terminated :-

  • Train no 59440 Ahmedabad – Mumbai Central Passenger will be terminated at Palghar Station and will be reversed as Train no 59439  i. e. Train no 59440/39 will be remain cancelled between Palghar – Mumbai Central – Palghar.
  • Train no 19116 Bhuj – Dadar Express will be terminated at Borivali and will be reversed as train no 19115  from Borivali.
  • Train no 12996 Ajmer/ Udaipur – Bandra Terminus Express will be terminated at Borivali and will be reversed as train no 12995  from Borivali.

7th Railway Electrical Engineers Day celebrated at Electric Loco Shed, Lallaguda/Secunderabad

The members of Institute of Indian Railway Electrical Engineers (IREE), South Central Railway Chapter celebrated 7th Railway Electrical Engineers Day Celebrations at Electric Loco Shed, Lallaguda, South Central Railway today i.e., 3rdFebruary,2018. Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav, General Manager, SCR was the chief guest and Shri John Thomas, Additional General Manager was the guest of honour. Shri A.A.Phadke, Principal Chief Electrical Engineer and Chairperson of IREE presided over the function.

The Electrical Engineers Day is celebrated as a mark of its remembrance for the 1st ever electric train was run on 3rd Feb, 1925 from Boribander (Now known as Mumbai CST) to Kurla on 1500v DC on Great India Peninsula Railway.

Speaking on the Occasion, Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav stated that Electrical Engineering has got bright future ahead in the Railways as the emphasis is laid in the recent Budget for Railway Electrification all over the Railway network. The General Manager stated that the Hon’ble Minister for Railways and the Chairman, Railway Board are taking positive view for the introduction of semi Hi-Speed trains and Hi- Speed Trains Network. He also appealed to the Officials of Electrical department to rise to the requirements of large scale railway electrification projects and ensure timely completion from concept to commissioning. SCR is placed at top position over Indian Railways in terms of achieving Energy conservation awards continuously for three years with the efforts made by Electrical Department and should maintain the same in forth coming years, he added. The General Manager also visited the Electric Loco Shed, interacted with the staff and planted a sapling in the premises.

Earlier, Shri John Thomas, Additional General Manager spoke on the occasion and said that Electric Engineers have to face the challenges ahead to achieve the targets of electrification projects completion.

Shri Gopinath Mallya, Chief Electrical Loco Engineer welcomed the dignitaries and made a presentation on the theme of Electric Traction and Technological advancements over the years. Shri A.A.Phadke, Principal Chief Electric Engineer Smt. Padmini Radhakrishnan, Principal Financial Advisor (PFA); Shri Arjun Mundiya, Principal Chief Mechanical Engineer; Shri P.K.Sangewar, Principal Chief Material Manager; Shri Sanjay Sankrityayan, Chief Security Commissioner; Shri Amit Varadan, Divisional Railway Manager, Secunderabad were amongst the Officials present. The delegates from RVNL, L&T Electrical and Automation, Seimens India Pvt. Ltd also participated in the seminar.

About Electrical Loco Shed, Lallaguda

Electric Loco shed Lallaguda was constructed as a part of Vijayawada – Balharshah Railway Electrification project at a cost of Rs. 25 crore including the Machinery & Plant with a designed homing capacity of 100 Locos. The shed was inaugurated on 06.09.1995.The shed has started with initial holding of 72 Locomotives comprising of WAM4 & WAG5 for hauling Passenger and Goods Trains. Subsequently higher Horse Power Express locos of WAP4 class were inducted at the end of year 1995. The state of Art technology Three phase locos are inducted in May 2007.

At present the shed has a total holding of 211 Locomotives including 101 coaching locos. The shed is operating 93 express loco link including prestigious trains like Rajdhani, Duranto, Sampark kranthi express trains.

ELS/LGD carries out Minor maintenance schedule (IA/IB/IC/IT) and Major Maintenance Schedules (AOH/MOH/IOH) as well as unscheduled repairs of locos. POH of Locos is carried out at Bhusawal, Perambur, Kancharapara & Dahood Loco workshops.

The shed is able to carry out maintenance of the locomotives with best practices on Indian Railways with highest reliability of the locomotives with meagre 2.77 manpower per loco (against 3.38 IR Average)

Loco Holding:

The present holding is as shown below

Holding of ELS/LGD

Coaching Goods Total
WAP4 WAP7 WAG9
40 (Conventional) 61 (3 Phase) 110 (3 Phase) 211
Make 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 (As on 30.08.17)
WAP4 63 60 59 60 60 60 58 47 40 40
WAP7 2 8 17 24 33 40 40 47 54 55
WAG7 8 16 8
WAG9 52 62 71 74 77 81 95 110 118 120
TOTAL 125 146 155 158 170 181 193 204 212 215

ELS/LGD carries out Minor maintenance schedule (IA/IB/IC/IT) and Major Maintenance Schedules (AOH/MOH/IOH) as well as unscheduled repairs of locos. POH of Locos is carried out at Bhusawal, Perambur, Kancharapara & Dahood Loco workshops.

The shed is able to carry out maintenance of the locomotives with best practices on Indian Railways with highest reliability of the locomotives with meagre 2.77 manpower per loco (against 3.38 IR Average).

The loco shed is at present headed by the rank of JAG grade  Senior Divisional Electrical Engineer assisted by one Divisional Engineer, one Assistant Divisional Engineer along with Senior Material Manager who is responsible for managing the procurement, stocking and distributing of stores to various sections.

The loco maintenance wing is divided into main sections headed by a Senior Section Engineer and assisted by junior supervisory staff to monitor and improve various maintenance schedules and modification works carried out in the section. A locomotive nominated for maintenance is first received by the PPO section and dispatched out through the same section after completion of the maintenance.

The role played by the other sections namely, Traction Motor, Bogie, Auxiliary Machines, Electronics, SPM and Relay, TFP & GR, Pneumatic, Technical, Tool Room, Machine Shop, General and Store section is vital in completing the process. In a nutshell, it is a comprehensive team effort that keeps the wheels on the move.

Non-Gazetted:

Staff Sanction Actual
Supervisors 63 63
Artisans 523 421
Group D 88 118
Ministerial 16 12
Total 690 614
Man power/loco 2.77
IR average 3.38

IMPORTANT MILESTONES:

WAP4 Loco No: 22313 of Electric loco shed Lallaguda adjudged 3rd best out of more than 20 locos in All India basis competition of Crew Friendly Cab Modification contest organized by Ministry of Railways in April’03.

Innovation proposed by ELS/LGD on modification of End Hanger Assembly of brake rigging of WAP4 locomotive was chosen as second best innovation in Indian Railways by Railway Board for the year 2006-2007 and sanctioned a cash prize of Rs. 2,00,000/-.

GM special group award of Rs. 25000/- was declared to ELS/LGD for its excellent performance during 2010-11 among Zonal level.

Electric Loco shed, Lallaguda received “Best Electric Loco Shed Shield” for the years 2010 & 2012 among the three sheds in SC Railway.

Performance Indices:

Outage: The coaching and goods outage for the last 05 years with current year are given below:

2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18(Apr-Aug)
Chg Goods Chg Goods Chg Goods Chg Goods Chg Goods
Railway Board Target 88.33 65.20 87.42 76.89 85.95 99.51 87 107.15 85.4 110.9
Actual 88.79 73.03 85.2 82.06 82.59 98.39 82.53 103.86 83.36 104.23

Statistical Ineffective: The Statistic ineffective details for the last 02 years with current year are given below:

2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18(Apr-Aug)
Target 6.0 7.25 6.0 9.52 7.6
Actual 7.42 8.85 7.87 7.96 8.82

Reliability:

PUNCTUALITY RELIABILITY (Per 100 locos/month)

2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18(Apr-Aug)
3.1 3.3 3.3 2.5 2.5

ASSET RELIABILITY (Per 100 locos/month)

2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18(Apr-JUL)
3.1 3.8 4.2 3.2 3.4

ENERGY REGENERATION IN 3PHASE LOCOS (in Million Units)

2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18(Apr-Aug)
62.6 69.6 82.8 98.2 30.6

INNOVATION/ GOOD WORK DONE

1.To avoid dropping of slack adjuster assembly (bottom) in case of breakage of its Split cotter pin in WAP7 locos, ELS/LGD proposed provision of hexagonal head bolt with plain washer and castle nut in place of slack adjuster pin with split cotter pin. The item was discussed during 37th MSG meeting and accepted by Railway Board. RDSO issued Modification No. MS 441 for this arrangement to all Zonal Railways.

2.The falling of brake hanger was observed which are supported by single headless pin in WAP7 locos. To prevent the falling of brake hanger in case of brake hanger pin coming out, E clamps have been developed and provided by ELS/LGD for brake hangers5,6,19&20 which acts as stopper for the brake hanger lever pin. RDSO issued Standard Maintenance Instruction no. SMI 282 on this arrangement to all Zonal Railways.

3.ELS/LGD proposed to remove anti spin valve and associated double check valve in brake system of three phase locomotives since they are not in service. This was proposed by SCR in 37th MSG meeting and accepted by Railway Board.RDSO issued Modification no. MS 447 to all Zonal Railways.

4.ELS/LGD proposed to carryout insitu Magnetic particle testing on TM motor support of 3 phase locos during schedules to detect the cracks.Accordingly RDSO issued Maintenance instruction No.269 Rev.1’ dt:16-3-16 to all Zonal Railways.

5.ELS/LGD has highlighted the problem of non availability of C clearance of MSU which is leading to MSU failures in 3phase locos. Accordingly RDSO issued modification no.456 Rev’0′ dt:9.1.17 for Modification in drawing of supporting ring to achieve adequate ‘C’ Clearance in MSU assembly of 6FRA-6068 TM in WAG9/WAP7 class of locomotives.

6.ELS/LGD proposed to review MOH schedule periodicity of WAG9 locomotives from 18 months to 24 months.During decisions on recommendations of 61stESC Railway Board accepted the proposal and RDSO vide letter no. RDSO Lr No. EL/3.6.1/1, Dt.19.10.16 had issued Revised MOH (TOH) schedule for WAG9 for 24 months.

REDUCING EXPENDITURE:

INDIGENOUSLY DEVELOPED TRACTION CONVERTER COOLANT PUMP:

Converter coolant pumps which are received in M/s BHEL make IGBT Traction Converter locos are of magnetic coupling type and having high failure rate. The cost of the pump is high (Rs.12,98,903/-approx) and the maintenance time is also high. ELS/LGD has explored indigenous market and developed a converter coolant pump through M/s Flowwell at the cost of Rs.1,10,548/- and achieved effective cost saving of Rs.11,88,355/- percoolant pump( RS.23,76,710/- per loco approx). This was accepted by Railway Board & RDSO in 38thMSG meeting.

Reducing energy consumption:

Three phase locomotives are equipped with regenerative braking. These locomotives have contributed saving of Rs. 15.9 crores during 2009-10, Rs. 20.3 crores in 2010-11 & Rs. 11.3 crores during 2011-12 upto August (Rs. 4.5 /unit) through regeneration of energy.

Goods Outage :

Goods outage has been 101.13 locos per day during this month as against the target of 104.1 locos, i.e., 08.52 % above the RB target. With this, the cumulative Goods outage for the year so far has been 73.03 locos against the target of 65.20 locos. i.e 12.01 % above the Railway board target.

Inspections / Super checks carried out:

Officer Day Time Night Time
Sr.DEE 1 1
DEE 1 1
ADEE-I 1 1
ADEE-II 1 1

Energy Conservation:

During the month, 4.5 Million units of Energy was regenerated by 41 three phase locomotives (Locos visited the shed) which was 13.03% of Energy consumed by them. With this 65.64 Million units were generated in total during 2012-2013 which was 13.67% of Energy consumed.

CORDLESS IMPACT WRENCHES:

10nos. Battery operated cordless impact wrenches procured this month for the usageof staff working on various equipment of the locomotive. These wrenches operate at 1.8 Volts for the sizes from M12 to M20 and deliver torque up to 650 Nm. These electrical portable wrenches arelight in weight and easy to operate. They can be used for tightening/loosening bolts of Axle boxes,Transformers, Gear cases etc.

ANTI SMOKING CAMPAIGN

TOBACCO DAY.  Dr. Anjaiah. MD, Dr.Sunil. Chest Physician and Dr.Padma. Family planning In  charge from Railway Hospital, Lallaguda have participated in this campaign and given presentation on the health hazards of active and passive smoking. The meeting was attended by the officers, supervisors and staff of ELS/LGD.

SPECIAL  DRIVES :

15 days special drive to joint check of pantographs with TRD staff and to check and ensure condition of roof equipments (including pantographs, cleaning of roof insulators and roof bars etc.,) in electric locos from 28-12-2013 to 11-01-2014.So far 5 locos covered under this drive.

Regeneration of Energy:

During this month 5.08 Million units of Energy was regenerated by 51 three phase locos (locos visited the shed), which was 12.61 % of the energy consumed by them.

Rail infrastructure around Delhi got a major boost in the 2018 Union Budget

Railway infrastructure around Delhi got a major boost in the 2018 budget, with many hundreds of crores in funding across two projects – the Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) and the Delhi Metro.

The RRTS is a series of rail corridors that connect the central sections of the city of Delhi to its neighbouring National Capital Region (NCR) and some parts of the neighbouring states of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. The National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) is the entity implementing the high-speed regional rail system.

The project is currently in its inception stage but received a shot in the arm when the Centre allocated Rs 659 crore for Phase 1 of the project in the Union Budget.

In context, just last year, a measly Rs 0.01 crore was allocated to the project.

So what is being funded in Phase 1? This phase of the project consists of three corridors –

  • Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut (92.6 km).
  • Delhi-Gurugram-Rewari-Alwar (180 km).
  • Delhi-Sonipat-Panipat (111 km).

According to an NCRTC spokesperson, the first to be executed will be the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut corridor, with plans that hope to see trains covering the New Delhi-Meerut distance in less than an hour.

Meanwhile, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) got a Rs 50 crore grant for further expansion in the NCR. This amount will be disbursed for two projects –

  • Noida Sector 32 to Electronic City
  • Dilshad Garden to New Bus Adda (Ghaziabad).

This is apart from the total fund allocated for all Metro projects in the country — Rs. 14,314.60 crore, according to DMRC sources, quoted.

The Delhi Metro’s Phase 3 is already complete, and Phase 4 is yet to be approved by the Government and the Centre. The approval of Phase 4, will be followed by the disbursal of funds.

Kolkata Metro Services Affected By Technical Snag

  Metro Railway services were today affected in the southern part of Kolkata during morning rush hours from 9.:05 AM owing to a technical snag in a rake.

Train services from Kavi Subhash station in the far south to Mahanayak Uttam Kumar station were stalled for 20 minutes after a brake-binding snag in a rake at Shahid Khudiram station, Metro spokesperson Indrani Banerjee said.

During this period, truncated train services were run between Mahayanak Uttam Kumar station and Noapara in the northern part of the metropolis, she said.

Office-goers were affected owing to the disruption, leading to overcrowding of buses.

Watch: Alert Cop Saves 7-Year-Old Who Slipped As Train Started Moving

A seven-year-old boy was saved by a constable from the Railway Protection Force in Naigaon railway station in Mumbai. The constable’s swift action saved the boy from slipping into the small gap between the train track and the platform.

Constable Sunil Kumar Napa was on his duty at platform number 2, at Naigaon station, around 9 pm on February 2, when a train going towards Churchgate entered the station. CCTV footage showed that the boy, who was with his mother, trying to board but before he could the train started moving and he slipped and fell. His mother was already inside the compartment.

The constable, who was standing nearby, rushed in at lightning speed and caught the boy just on time, saving him from an accident, which could have been fatal. Commuters around were stunned but after a few seconds they rushed to towards the boy.

In appreciation of his swift action, the Western Railways have rewarded Constable Sunil Napa for his “exemplary courage and humanity”. The Railways said, apart from the reward, a certificate for his “sense of duty, presence of mind and quick action” has been awarded. The Railways a tweeted, “we thank other commuters too who helped the mother and the child.”

Mumbai trains, which are the lifeline of the city, see as many as eight accidents per day. According to the numbers of the Government Railway Police, over 3,000 people have died in train accidents in 2017.  Just about a fortnight ago, 22-year-old Marathi actor Praful Bhalerao, died in a similar situation when he tried to hop on to a moving train.

‘Tomato-Onion-Potato’: In Bengaluru, PM Modi Says Farmers “TOP” Priority

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said there has been a 180 per cent increase in the allocation for Karnataka after the BJP-led NDA government came to power in the centre. The money, however, has not been passed on by the state’s Congress government, he said. He also outlined the party’s plan for the state, which includes a suburban railway for Bengaluru, bonanza for farmers and reiterated Union finance minister Arun Jaitley’s budget promise of putting men in hawai chappals (slippers)  in haiwai jahaaj (airplanes).

“When the Congress was there in the centre, Karnataka was given Rs. 73,000 crore. When the BJP came to power in the centre, we gave the state 2 lakh crore. It is an increase of 180 per cent. However, have you seen that money given to the state?” he said.

He also blamed the Congress for murders of volunteers of the BJP. “With the Congress government in the state, what makes the news is ‘ease of doing murder’,” he charged, pitting it against what he said was the BJP’s focus of improving “ease of living” and ease of doing business.

The Prime Minister also continued his pitch to the farmers, who have been one of the key focus areas in the recently announced Union budget. The BJP, he said, has given “TOP” priority to the farmers, he added, explaining, “by TOP, I mean Tomato, Onion, Potato”.

The focus, he indicated, was also evident in the party’s choice for the top job in the state — BS Yeddyurappa, who headed the earlier BJP government in the state.

 “If farmer’s son Yeddurappa becomes the Chief Minister, the Centre’s MSP (minimum support price) scheme will be highly successful because he knows the problems of the farmers,” he said, referring to the government’s plan to set MSP at one-and-half times the cost of production.

Karnataka is the only state in south India, where the BJP came to power once. The party is going all-out to wrest power from the Congress in the assembly election that will be held later this year. Mr Yeddyurappa led the statewide Parivartana Rally, whose culmination was being addressed by PM Modi at Palace Grounds in the heart of the city.

The ruling Congress has dismissed the possibility of the rally influencing the voters. Senior state Congress leader Dinesh Gundu Rao said, “It was more an yatra of lies and deceit than any parivartana (progress)… they had no agenda or material to attack us. So all they were doing is spreading lies and creating disturbance.”

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