No state has asked to stop train services: Railway Chairman
No state has asked the railways to stop any train service yet, Railway Board Chairman Suneet Sharma said on Friday, adding that wherever the states have raised concerns about containment zones, passengers have undergone random tests and checks at the destinations. Sharma said that the railways has highlighted that all protocols are being followed by the states. Here are more details.
All details are available on the e-ticketing website
Sharma said, "Whenever there are concerns, the state governments have discussed the issues with us and where there are containment zones, they are doing random tests and checks." "The railways has all these details on the e-ticketing website and passengers are provided information on whether they have to undergo tests or carry a COVID-19-negative certificate on arrival," he said.
Price of platform tickers increased to discourage crowding
Sharma also said that the railways is doing a thermal screening of the passengers and has also notified the fine amounts for not following COVID-19 protocols. He added that the price of platform tickets has been increased at several stations to discourage crowding.
Railways has 4,000 COVID-19 isolation coaches across the country
"We have 4,000 isolation coaches for COVID-19 at different locations across India. We have received a demand from Nandurbar in Maharashtra for over 100 coaches and 20 isolation coaches have been provided," he said when asked about the converted coaches that can act as COVID-19 care centers. Sharma said that railways is keeping a close watch on all stations in Mumbai, Gujarat, and Karnataka.
Zonal general managers authorized to operate more trains
Sharma said that wherever the demand is high, the zonal general managers have been authorized to operate more trains. "I assure you that there is no dearth of services, the situation is quite normal, particularly in Mumbai, Surat, and Bengaluru," he added.
70% of train services have been restored
The Indian Railways is currently running 1,490 mail and express trains and 5,397 suburban train services on an average per day. "We are also running 28 clone trains of highly-patronized trains and 947 passenger trains," Sharma said, adding that 70 percent of train services have been restored. "To clear the extra rush across the country, the railways is operating 140 additional trains," he said.
140 special trains will make 483 trips in April, May
The Railway Board Chairman said that the national transporter has operated 42 trains between Delhi and Mumbai from April 12 to April 16. Sharma said that the 140 special trains will make 483 trips in April and May.
Schedule of special trains across the country
The Central Railway is operating 85 special trains for 284 trips, Western Railway is operating 28 trains for 152 trips, and the Northern Railway is operating 15 special trains for 19 trips. The East-Central Railway is operating two special trains for four trips, the North-Eastern Railway is operating nine trains for 14 trips and the North-Central Railway is operating one train for 10 trips.
Trains for high-demand destinations also being operated
Sharma also said that trains for high-demand destinations such as Uttar Pradesh's Gorakhpur, Lucknow, Varanasi, Manduadih, Prayagraj, Bihar's Patna, Bhagalpur, Darbhanga, Barauni, Jharkhand's Bokaro, Ranchi, Assam's Guwahati, and West Bengal's Kolkata are also being operated.
Railway rules out running Shramik Special trains
Meanwhile, Sharma has ruled out running Shramik Special trains and said that trains will be run wherever there is demand and requirement. Reportedly, owing to the strict restrictions imposed in Maharashtra, thousands of people, most of them migrant workers, scrambled to arrive at the Lokmanya Tilak Terminus in Mumbai on Wednesday, with the hope of boarding long-distance trains.