Our Bureau

Hyderabad, Dec. 1

WITH weathermen forecasting yet another cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal, the South Central Railway (SCR), perhaps for the first time, has started a media campaign, appealing to the public to tip the authorities off on chinks in the railway.

Though the Railways had earlier issued similar alerts, , this is first time that it has launched a major campaign. This comes in the wake of the recent train accident in Nalgonda district, which left 116 train passengers killed.

The Railways and the State Government faced criticism for not taking proper care. Many thought the accident could have been averted had the officials been more vigilant."Tell us about incidences of overflowing of water on the track and tanks and rivers crossing the danger marks," an SCR spokesman said. "This would greatly help the Railways to take immediate action in controlling the train movements or taking up the precautionary measures in strengthening the track," he said.

The Agrawal inquiry panel that probed the Nalgonda mishap observed in the preliminary report that it occurred due to failure of equipment/structure, affecting the Rama Samudram Tank and the railway bridge.

"We have to take lessons from the bitter experiences. This time, we would like to make everyone aware of the importance to let us know about such breaches or vulnerabilities. This could avert accidents," the official said.

The SCR will also advertise this appeal in newspapers. To let people contact the officials, the SCR has earmarked several telephones across the State.The numbers are: Chief Controller (SCR, Rail Nilayam, Secunderabad) 040-27820326; Chief Controller (Secunderabad Division) 040-27823156; Chief Controller (Hyderabad) 040-27834535; Chief Controller (Guntakal) 08552-226427; Chief Controller (Vijayawada) 0866-2578860; Chief Controller (Guntur) 0863-2234613; and Chief Controller (Nanded) 02462-261729.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated December 2, 2005)
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