Nov 6, 2013

Railway services improving despite Budget Crunch: Kharge

Union Rail Minister Mallikarjun Kharge today said Railways is continuously improving its services to passengers and augmenting safety features despite a budget crunch.

“A big chunk of the budget alloted to the Railways is spent on the salary of employees and the rest goes to the new rail line being laid in Jammu and Kashmir and other important projects.

“Only the quarter of the whole budget is left for other projects in different parts of the country,” the Railway Minister said after flagging off the first direct train between Kanpur and Amritsar here today.

He said that his ministry is working on several projects to improve the safety and provide more facilities to passengers. The High Speed Rail Corporation is constituted to move forward in the direction of the ambitious high speed rail projects, he added.

Talking about the Food security scheme of UPA Government, he said that the Centre wants to ensure that everyone should get basic food to eat, even if adjustments have to be made in other projects.

Earlier today, local MP and Union Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said that the new Kanpur-Amritsar train is the ninth train to connect the city to different parts of the country during his tenure as a lawmaker from the area. There are already 8 trains running from Kanpur to other parts of India, he said.

He rued that despite being one of the largest city in Uttar Pradesh neither Central nor State Government took interest in its development.

He, however, urged the Railway Minister to allot more developmental projects to Kanpur.

Later, the Railway minister reviewed several other projects being undertaken by his ministry here.

Source..Rail News

Kanpur-Amritsar weekly express flagged off

A new weekly express train between Kanpur and Amritsar was flagged off by Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge today at Kanpur.

The regular service of the train will be operational from November 11, said a senior Northern Railway official.

As announced in Rail Budget 2012-13, the Kanpur-Amritsar Express will depart from Kanpur on every Monday from November 11 at 5.05 PM to reach Amritsar at 9.30 AM, the next day.

In the return direction, the Amritsar-Kanpur train will depart from Amritsar on every Tuesday from November 12 at 12.35 PM to reach Kanpur at 5 AM, the next day.

Launching of the train was delayed due to the ongoing gauge conversion in the route.

The Kanpur-Amritsar-Kanpur weekly express will have two AC III Tier, five Sleeper class, six general class besides two disabled friendly second class cum luggage van coaches. The train will stop at Bareilly, Moradabad, Laksar, Roorkee, Saharanpur, Ambala, Rajpura, Ludhiana, Phagwara, Jalandhar City and Beas stations en route in both directions.

Source..Rail News

Kolkata Metro hike – FAQs and a Guide to Commuters

Kolkata:  Metro Railway fares will go up from Thursday, for the first time since 2001. The minimum fare will rise by a rupee to Rs.5, which would still pinch commuters less than a bus or an auto ride over the same distance. The maximum fare will rise from Rs.14 to Rs.25. Kolkata Metro answers some of the questions on the commuters’ minds before the hike comes into effect.
Will I be able to use my existing smart card?
Yes. But from Thursday smart card-holders will pay as much for a ride as those travelling with tokens. Currently, smart card-holders get a concession of Rs.1.
Will I still get a bonus after recharging my smart card?
Yes, but the bonus has been reduced to 10 per cent from 25 per cent. The cards can be recharged with a minimum of Rs.100 and a maximum of Rs.1000. Subsequent recharging can be done but the balance must not exceed Rs.5000.
Can I recharge my smart card before November 7 to avail myself of the existing rate of bonus?
The recharge option is available up to Rs.500. Metro officials said there has been a 30 per cent rise in recharging of smart cards at several stations in the run-up to the hike.
Will the trains be less crowded post-hike?
Metro officials expect the passenger count to fall. They said those who used to travel between five and 10 km would prefer road transport. Metro carries around 7.5 lakh passengers every day, more than 30 per cent of its capacity.
Will I be able to use multi-ride tickets?
All existing Minimum Multi Ride (MMR), Limited Multi Ride (LMR), General Multi Ride (GMR) and Extended Multi Ride (EMR) tickets will be withdrawn. The users need to deposit the multi-ride tickets at the counters before Thursday. In exchange, they will get a smart card that will carry the balance of the multi-ride ticket.
Will I retain the existing balance after November 7?
Yes, but the user will have to recharge the card with at least Rs.100 within a year.
Will the tokens remain the same?
Yes. The same tokens will be used but the software inside the chips will be upgraded to adjust with the revised fare structures.
Any new type of ticket?
Yes. A smart card for tourists will be introduced. A person can by a smart card valued at Rs 250 and avail unlimited rides for one day. A three-day unlimited ride will cost Rs.550.
Will the services improve?
Not immediately. Metro authorities said they were planning to add more trains so the five-minute frequency could be stretched. But that won’t happen in three to four months.
Source..Rail News

Speciall train for Delhi

ALLAHABAD : In view of the heavy passenger rush during the current festival time, a special train would be plied between Allahabad and Anand Vihar terminal (Delhi).

Train number 4117/4118 and 4119/4120 would ply between Allahabad and Anand Vihar Terminal. The train would depart from Allahabad at 9:50 pm and reach Fatehpur at 11:10 pm, Kanpur Central at 00:20 am, Aligarh at 4:25 am, Ghaziabad at 6:35 am and terminate at Anand Vihar Terminal at 7:10 am. On the return journey, the train would depart from Anad Vihar terminal at 8:25 am and reach Ghaziabad at 8:55 am, Aligarh at 10:05 am, Kanpur at 2:50 pm, Fatehpur at 3:55 pm and before terminating at Allahabad at 5:40 pm.

Train number 4117/4118 will depart from Allahabad on November 6 and 10 and from Anand Vihar Terminal end on November 7 and 11. However, train number 4119/4120 would depart from Allahabad end on November 9 and from Anand Vihar Terminal end on November 10. This train will comprise of one AC-II coach, six sleeper and five general class coaches.

In addition to this, special train Patna-Hyderbad Special (7092) would ply on November 10 instead of its scheduled programme on November 8. Further, train number 4005 Patna-New Delhi AC special would ply on November 5 and 10 instead of November 5 and 8. Train number 14007 Patna -New Delhi special will ply on November 10 instead of November 9. 


Mallikarjun Kharge to launch dual cab locomotive tomorrow

Railways will launch a new designed locomotive with dual cabin system tomorrow in a bid to enhance the safety aspect and provide better facilities to drivers.

NEW DELHI: Railways will launch a new designed locomotive with dual cabin system tomorrow in a bid to enhance the safety aspect and provide better facilities to drivers.

Named "Vijay", the 4500 horse power diesel locomotive with AC facility is being equipped with double cabins at both ends of the engine to enable the drivers a better range of view, speed and operation. 

Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge will flag off the indigenously designed locomotive in Varanasi, said a senior Railway Ministry official. 

Manufactured at Diesel Locomotive Works in Varanasi, the high power dual cab locomotiveis expected to run at about 100 km per hour speed and will be used mostly in heavy haul operation. 

With the induction of dual cab locomotive, the safety aspect has been enhanced due to its visibility advantage, the official said. It costs about Rs 14.7 crore. 

At present, diesel locos with 4500 HP for freight trains are equipped with a single drive cabin at the front side of the engine. 

"Drivers face difficulties in viewing the signals while running the train in opposite direction," the official said. 

The new design overcomes speed limitation by providing two cabins for drivers and crew-friendly features such as LCD screen displays among others. 

The seats inside the cabin have been ergonomically designed and various parameters such as speed, air pressure in brake pipes, feed pipes, main reservoir tanks have been customised and displayed in a computer display, eliminating the conventional gauges.


Railways to improve inquiry system

PATNA: Railways has decided to replace its present face-to-face inquiry system with high power electronic gadgets at Patna Junction and other major stations falling under the ECR's jurisdiction to give accurate and authentic information about movement of trains to passengers through the interactive voice response system via phones.

According to railway sources, the ECR held a high-level meeting recently with senior divisional commercial managers (senior DCMs) of all five divisions to discuss the proposed new plan of railway inquiry system. ECR chief commercial manager Mahboob Rab and chief signal and telecom engineer A Jha were also present at the meeting and directed these divisional commercial managers to explore the possibility of installing the new sophisticated gadget - electronic display boards - at all major stations of the ECR, sources said.

Meanwhile, a section of people also urged railways to provide information about trains on landline phones at the railway inquiry counters at all major stations of ECR so that people need not rush to station to know about arrival and departure of trains either originating or passing trains. This facility was earlier available at major stations, but was later withdrawn following introduction of inquiry number 139. Surprisingly, 139 does not provide information about all passenger trains including local trains, they said.


Metro projects: Plan to pass security cost to govt

To encourage private participation in metro rail and rapid rail projects, the Urban Development (UD) Ministry is planning to pass on the cost of security to the government. The ministry wants that the cost of deploying Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which provides security at all the existing and upcoming metro projects in the country, should be borne by the government and not private players.

To bring this proposal to effect, the ministry has moved a Cabinet note that the cost of security for all metro and rail transit projects coming up on public-private partnership should be borne by the government and not by the operator.

The note says that passing on the cost of security personnel to the metro operators would lead to an increase in passenger fare by about 40 per cent. "Providing security of metros through CISF is an expensive proposition which may have an adverse bearing on the viability of the project in case it is to be borne by the metro railway," the Cabinet note says.

Earlier, the Reliance Infrastructure-owned Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Limited, which no longer runs the Airport Express line in Delhi, had a dispute over payment for the cost of deploying CISF personnel, which came to about Rs 18-20 crore. The money is yet to be deposited with the government as the case is under arbitration.

The DMRC is owned 50 per cent by the state government and the remaining by the Central government. The newly opened Jaipur Metro was earlier fully owned by the state but now the composition has been changed to 50 per cent each to state and Centre.

Reliance Infrastructure is also coming up with two metro lines in Mumbai in partnership with Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority. In Hyderabad, L&T is the private party building the 71.1-km long elevated metro rail project.

"The cost of security becomes an issue in case of private players. If the metro rail project is owned by the state or the Centre then these issues do not crop up. The private player would obviously want to pass on the cost of maintaining the security to the passengers," said a senior official.


Villagers block Delhi-Amabla rail track to protest land consolidation

KARNAL: People from five villages blocked the Delhi-Amabla rail track here on Tuesday to protest against the land consolidation process, delaying several trains.

Trains, including Shaheed Express and Super Fast Express, were delayed for around two hours due to the agitation which was part of the ongoing protest against the administration's alleged indifference towards the villagers' demand for status quo in the land consolidation process, which is challenged in the court.

The villagers alleged that their agricultural land was snatched by the government in the land consolidation process. Social activist J P Shekhpura said villagers have been cultivating land for decades but the revenue officials in connivance with land mafia changed girdawari and the revenue entries were manipulated to change the title names in favour of some influential persons.

The villagers said they want land back or compensation for the land being taken away. The dispute over 3,000 acre land in Lalupura, Amritpur Khurd, Amritpur Kalan and Kairwali, Araepura villages has been hanging fire for quite some time now. While over 2,000 acre had been restored to rightful owners following court orders, the remaining 1,000 acres continued to be in the possession of some influential people.

Dumped debris irks residents, threatens Metro work

BANGALORE: Some residents of Anjanapura are a worried lot. Every day, about 20 trucks carrying debris pass through this locality in Uttarahalli and dump the load at nearby abandoned quarries, causing severe dust pollution. The residents are blaming the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation(BMRC) for depositing debris of the Namma Metro tunnelling work here on a daily basis. They have threatened to block the trucks again if authorities don't intervene. The confusion over the issue even partially affected Metro work at Majestic. However, a BMRC spokesperson said the trucks didn't ply for a day and things are normal now. 

"We are suffering due to the dust that blows into our houses. The houses are on a low-lying area and the quarry at a higher level. The dumping has made the main access road unsafe as heavy trucks ply all the time. We protested two days back but it has still not stopped," said Sriram (name changed). 

However, Venkatesh C, caretaker of the land, said, "Some people are building a temple in the vicinity and wanted to take some iron rods from the scrap lying here but the BMRC contractors did not allow it. This is why they protested." Lokesh, president of the ward committee in Anjanapura who led the protest, is mum on the issue. 

Gundappa R, another keeper in the quarry, said, "The land is so huge that even if dumping continues for 10 years, it will not be filled." BMRC has been permitted to dump excavated debris in many places on the outskirts of the city by BBMP and BDA. 

"The tunneling work has not stopped. We have been dumping in Anjanapura for some months now and all this while there seemed to be no problem. It seems that the protest was instigated by somebody. We also have a permission to dump at hennur Bande but that is coming to the brim now," said NP Sharma, Chief Engineer (Underground), BMRCL. (But waiting for confirmation.)
SOURCE..times of india

Alok Johri takes over as Member Mechanical, Railway Board

Shri Alok Johri takes over as Member Mechanical, Railway Board on November 05, 2013.

Shri Alok Johri has been appointed as Member Mechanical, Railway Board and ex-officio Secretary to the Government of India. Shri Alok Johri assumed the charge of Member Mechanical Railway Board today i.e 5th November 2013. Prior to this new posting, he served as General Manager of North Central Railway (NCR) since June, 2012 and under his leadership, NCR won the prestigious Govind Vallabh Pant Shield for best performing Zone. He has also held the posts of Divisional Railway Manager, West Central Railway, Jabalpur, Chief Workshop Engineer, South Central Railway, Secunderabad, Chief Administrative Officer, COFMOW, New Delhi, Chief Mechanical Engineer, South Western Railway, Hubli and as Chief Administrative Officer, Rail Coach Factory, Rae Bareli. 

After passing with honours on completion of four years Mechanical Engineering training as Special Class Railway Apprentice at the Indian Railways Institute of Mechanical & Electrical Engineering, Jamalpur, Shri Alok Johri joined the Indian Railways Service of Mechanical Engineers in March 1977. During his training, he also passed the examinations of the Council of Engineering Institutions, London to graduate in Mechanical & Production Engineering, and, the examinations of the Institution of Engineers, India to graduate in Electrical Engineering. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers, India and a Chartered Engineer. 

In the domain of management, Shri Johri holds a Masters Diploma in Public Administration from the Indian Institute of Public Administration, Delhi, where he stood first and passed with distinction. He studied ‘Transport Management, Planning and Control’ at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. He has attended customised training programmes for higher management at Hote E’tuit Commerciale, Paris, Cranfield University, UK and Stern Business School, New York University. He also holds a Graduate Diploma in Materials Management from the Indian Institute of Materials Management. 

Shri Johri has had a chequered career on the Indian Railways with experience in Man & Asset management, Workshop management, Railway operations with emphasis on Reliability & Economy, Materials management, Investments & Budgetary Control, Transfer of technology to other country, and, R&D. His career includes many path breaking contributions on the Indian Railways. He has the rare distinction of being awarded the overall best performance shield in every field assignment held including 3 years’ running as DRM, Jabalpur and his present assignment as General Manager, North Central Railway. 

As Deputy Team Leader of IR team in Vietnam, in 1984, Shri Johri was responsible for commissioning of locomotives from “knocked down” condition and ‘Transfer of Technology, by providing technical know-how, know-why and after sales service to Vietnamese Railways. He did original research & design work in successful up gradation of the main line diesel electric locomotive engine. 

As DRM, Jabalpur, Shri Johri had a record of completing SRSF works under signalling and complete track renewal (CTR) to his credit. He established refurbishing of Shatabdi and Rajdhani coaches in Jagadhari Workshop and was instrumental in making the workshops of South Central Railway the first on IR to turn out complete rakes of stainless steel bodied BOXNR wagons and all coaches with extended POH periodicity. He has been responsible in vastly improving the reliability and availability of diesel locos on Northern, South Central and South Western Railways. 

As CAO of Rail Coach Factory, Raebareli, he could launch production within one year of taking over the dead project in which he had to conceptualise and design the factory, strategise and implement construction including a full fledged township along with simultaneously starting production. 

Shri Johri has represented the Indian Railways in the CIMAC, UIC, IMechE & ASME international conferences and has authored 15 papers in international/Indian journals/forums, covering Management and Mechanical Engineering subjects, receiving the Institution of Engineers’ gold medal for his paper titled “Comparison of operations with Main line BG Diesel and Electric locomotives on the Indian Railways”. He has been principal member of the committee of BIS for IC engines. He has also taught management and diesel locomotive technology as Dean of IRIMEE, Jamalpur. 

Source - PIB





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