To clear rush, Railways to run additional trains from Mumbai, Delhi, Karnataka

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 16, 2021

Starts deploying Covid-19 care coaches in Maharashtra

To clear extra rush, Railways is planning to run additional trains this month and in May from high demand areas like Mumbai (Bandra side), Surat, Delhi, Karnataka towards Kumbh Mela side, Bihar, West Bengal, among others, said Suneet Sharma, Chairman and CEO, Railway Board.

At present, 1,490 special trains on average per day are being operated, which is 70 per cent restoration of passenger services. During the same time last year, passenger trains were stalled because of Covid-19 lockdown.

Trains are being run from Central Railway, Western Railway, Northern Railways, East Central Railway during April-May 2021 with almost 140 trains and 483 trips are planned dfor destinations like Gorakhpur, Patna, Darbhanga, Varanasi, Guwahati, Manduadih, Barauni, Prayagraj, Ranchi, Lucknow Kolkata and Bhagalpur. Trains are being run towards Bihar and West Bengal.

To ensure safety, Railways randomly checks passengers, uses thermal guns for checking fever, providing only ready to eat meals, and not providing linen.

None of the States have asked Railways to stop trains, according to Sharma, although Odisha and Uttarakhand had earlier asked for checking passengers before boarding. On Thursday, states like Odisha have stopped the inter-state movement of buses.

Railways has made available state-related arrival requirements (negative RTPCR) to its passengers through its ticketing website.

Covid-19 care coaches

Namburdar district in Maharashtra has sought 90 Covid-19 care coaches. Railways had earlier readied 4,000 Covid-care coaches last year, and informed respective governments regarding coaches’ availability.

Railways has over 100 locations – approved by Health Ministry -- where hospitals, dispensaries are being used for vaccinating both railway staff, their families, and non-railway citizens. “We are vaccinating frontline staff like drivers, loco assistants, guards, TTEs,” said Sharma.

Railways’ medical, Railway Police Force staff are being vaccinated, and some have received the second dose. “We have asked hospitals of national transporter is not facing any shortage of vaccines,” said Sharma.

On whether people are being tested before being vaccinated as vaccines are of no use for someone who is Covid-19 positive, the Railways said that they are following guidelines as laid by the Health Ministry, and nothing extra or unusual is being done. Incidentally, some health Centres in Maharashtra, including Nashik, have started testing people before vaccinating them.

Freight loading

Indian Railways loaded 54.4 million tonnes cargo from April 1 to 15 30.8 mt in the same fortnight last year, during lockdown,, reflecting 77 per cent growth year-on-year. Freight revenue was also high at ₹5,429.3 crore (₹2,861.7 crore), according to data shared by Railways' Chairman and CEO Sharma.

In fiscal 2020-21, the first full year of hit by pandemic, Railways registered highest ever cargo loading of 1,232.64 mt.

Additional trains being run during April-May 2021

● Central Railway- 85 trains (284 trips)

● Western Railway – 28 trains (152 trips)

● Northern Railway- 15 trains (19 trips)

● East Central Railway-02 trains (4 trips)

● North Eastern Railway- 09 train (14 trips)

● North Central Railway- 01 train (10 trips)

Total trains 140 (483 trips)

Trains in operations

● 5,387 suburban services are being operated

● 28 special trains are being operated as clones of highly patronized trains

● 947 Passenger services are being operated

Published on April 16, 2021

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