Dec 28, 2013

PETER GRAY: Constant turnover of ex-Indian railways stock

made in england:  This BESA mixed-traffic 4-6-0 came from the Eastern Bengal Railway, and was built by Vulcan Foundry at Newton-le-Willows in 1910. In Iraq it is No 102

made in england: This BESA mixed-traffic 4-6-0 came from the Eastern Bengal Railway, and was built by Vulcan Foundry at Newton-le-Willows in 1910. In Iraq it is No 102

AFTER our all-day trip on the paddle steamer, north to the confluence of the rivers Tigris and Euphrates, to the supposed site of the Garden of Eden, it was back to earth next day and to the routine of running our office.
But rumours were beginning to spread regarding the long term future for the presence of British, or indeed Indian, troops in Iraq.
I'm not sure quite how aware we were of the political situation in India, where the population were about to be divided into India and East and West Pakistan, as it turned out with terrible results.
The Indians we had contact with in the office were already quite concerned for the future.
June 21 saw the departure of another group going back to the UK on 'LIAP' leave, and as far as our group was concerned it was becoming a race between our going on leave and the whole of the remaining British troops in Iraq being withdrawn back to the Canal Zone in Egypt.
More rumours were rife that because there was so much transport in store at Shaiba — 10 miles up the line towards Baghdad — that everyone was to be given a short driving course, and when the evacuation day came, everyone was to be given a vehicle to drive as far as possible. If your vehicle broke down, and could not be repaired at the roadside, then it was to be abandoned, you joining another vehicle.
Whether it ever happened like that, I don't know, but I suspect not. Note that in those days very few 17 or 18 year olds would have had a driving licence, other than through training in the forces. During the early part of the summer, before it got too hot, I made several more visits to the engine shed at Maquil, where there seemed to be a constant turnover of the ex-Indian railways 4-6-0s.
These, although all looking quite similar, had a lot of minor variations.
The minor variations were partly due to the engines coming from several different Indian railways.
The similarity was because they all followed the British Engineering Standards Association design for a metre gauge mixed-traffic 4-6-0 suitable for most Indian railways.
Although most would have been built unsuperheated, and with slide valves, by the time they were sent to Iraq many had been superheated, and usually this also involved conversion to piston valves.
As the piston valves needed more room, it was usually necessary to raise the foot-plating to give the necessary clearance.
August 15, 1947, was Indian Independence Day. Our independence day was September 19, 1947, when a small group of us gathered at Maquil station to join the nightly 6.30pm departure to Baghdad, to begin the long journey home for our 28 days Leave In Advance (of) Python.
Lastly, may I wish all readers a very happy Christmas, and safe travelling into 2014.

SOURCE - torquay herald express.

GOOD NEWS FOR MUMBAIKAR - WR to run Eight Special Local Trains on 31st December Mid Night

To clear extra rush of passengers o­n eve of new year Western Railway will run eight special local trains o­n midnight of 31st December, 2013, four from Churchgate to Virar and four from Virar to Churchgate.

DOWN ( Churchgate – Virar )
UP ( Virar – Churchgate )
SPL 01
SPL 03
SPL 05
SPL 06

All these trains will be of 12 coaches and halt at all stations.

Visitors Enjoyed Christmas Carnival -2013 at National Rail Museum

National Rail Museum organized “The Annual Christmas Carnival” on 25th December, 2013. The Museum was decorated in the Christmas mood with a Christmas tree loaded with toys, stars and other attractive gifts. Free Magic show, Free puppet show and Free Film show were the main attractions apart from the popular toy train running in the museum. The visitors also enjoyed the ride of the Royal Monorail of Patiala State. The vintage monorail is one of the very few engines running on its own steam. Visitors enjoyed delicious Kachori, Bread Pakora, meals and also popcorn and kulfi. The vintage “kulhad chai (tea)” was quite popular. Santa Clause was seen roaming in the museum distributing chocolates to the visitors. Visitors were dancing to the beats of “Dhol”. 

Railway Board Chairman Shri Arunendra Kumar and RWWCO Chairperson Smt. Kanta Kumar graced the occasion. A cake was cut to celebrate X-mas. Also, the NRM’s calendar for the year 2014 was launched at the hands of Chairman/Railway Board Shri Arunendra Kumar and Smt. Kanta Kumar. Delhi Division’s DRM Shri. A.K. Sachan also visited the museum and participated in the various activities. Chairman, Railway Board complimented the Director/NRM Shri Uday Singh Mina and his sincere museum staff for organizing the event and adding to the popularity of NRM amongst children and other visitors. Director/NRM, Shri Uday Singh Mina informed that about 3000 footfalls were recorded at the event.
Source - PIB

Want to Build a Metro Railway? Just see what Moscow MetroRail is upto, and decide.!

It’s not the speed, size, quantity and length, but “Quality” which matters. If you want to provide public transportation system to a booming city, you better have quite a Metro Rail Systemfor them. But the consciousness should dwell at what quality the Metro Rail System should be brought up is pertinent here, since a Metro Railway System is an “Irreversible long term commitment” by the Governments now that lasts for centuries together!
Boasting 188 station stops and covering 195 miles of track, Moskcovsky Metropliten, Moscow’s metro system, is more than up to the task. On an average day, the system sees 7 million people get from place to place. But just as noteworthy as its function is its fashion. The stations are simply beautiful, put together with careful design and planning to make them comfortable and attractive.

Don’t be fooled by the ornate styling, though. Many stations were constructed to double as shelters for air raids or nuclear events. They’re deep below the ground and they’re built to last. We wanted to take a look for ourselves and see what it’s like to get around Moscow by subway. To give you an idea of what we’re dealing with, here’s a snapshot of the complete system of Moscow Metro:

Stir threat over Railways callousness in Mayurbhanj

Baripada (BPO): Protesting the alleged callousness of the South Eastern Railway (SER) authorities for development of railway infrastructure in Mayurbhanj district and lack of facilities at Baripada station, the Mayurbhanj Railway Travelers’ Forum threatened to go for an agitation.

Mr Pradyumna Kumar Jena, a member of the forum, informed that they would stage a rail roko on 6 January. “We had recently met the senior railway officials and held a meeting regarding fulfillment of our demands in the presence of senior district officials. The meeting, however, failed to resolve the issues. We will stage a rail roko at Baripada station on 6 January to highlight our demands,” he said. Mr Jena observed that a strong sense of resentment is brewing among the district’s population for the step motherly attitude of the railway authorities. “The negligence meted out to Rupsa-Baripada-Bangiriposi section which comes under Kharagpur Division is continuing despite all our pleadings. We have stressed on, among other things, capacity augmentation and running of trains on time,” he said.

Mr Jena, while listing out the lack of basic amenities and facilities at Baripada railway station, said that it is no less than a nightmare for a passenger to depend on the station. “The passengers and commuters even face problems as there has been frequent link failure at Baripada ticket booking office. Onetelephone connection should immediately been given to the office,” he said. Alleging that the platform is full of potholes, Mr Jena charged that it causes inconvenience to the passengers, particularly the elderly,women and children. Some of them have also been injured in recent times.

The vice-president of the Forum, Mr Kishore Kar stressed on augmenting the facilities and also lengthening the platform to accommodate the coaches of trains like Bangiriposi-Bhubaneswar superfast express. “The platform of Baripada station must be extended so that additional coaches can be added to the without any inconvenience. installation of fare and seat availability display board, digital clock and CCTV Camera at Baripada ticket booking counters are our other major demands,” he said.

The Forum also demanded running more number of trains and proper preservation of century old steamtoy engine at Baripada station. “We also demand converting Betnoti station to a crossing station for proper timing of trains in Rupsa- Baripada-Bangiriposi section as per public needs and demands. Change in departure time of Baripada-Shalimar Similipal Intercity Express from Baripada and running this train daily instead of tri-weekly basis is high on our agenda,” Mr Kar added.

Source..Rail News

AC Coach of Bangalore-Nanded Express catches fire in AP, 26 Dead

S11, the burnt coach of the Tamil Nadu Express, on its arrival in Nellore in Andhra Pradesh. Photo: K. Ravikumar

Kotha Cheruvu Halt, Guntakal Division, S.C.Railway: The AC coach (B1) of Nanded bound Bangalore-Nanded Express (No.16594) caught fire near Kotha Cheruvu Halt Railway station today morning at 03.20 hrs. The Nanded Express crossed Puttaparthi Railway Station at 03.15 Hrs.

As many as 25 reserved passengers are found dead in the incident. It was reportedly learnt that children and a pregnant women were also burnt alive in the fire accident.

Many passengers tried to break open the glass panes, but failed to do so as there was no hammer placed in the AC coach, which resulted to more number of death toll. Few passengers were able to pull the chain of the train and bring the train to halt.

It is learnt that many passenger who survived in the incident reported to have burns ranging between 55-80% and are admitted in the hospital. Death toll was more due to the spring doors inside the AC coach were blocked and could not be opened by the passengers to reach the main door, leading to passengers collapsing inside. The bodies were burnt beyond recognition, eye witness told.

South Western Railway Helpline issued Helpline Numbers as under:

Puttparthi Railway Station:08555 280125,
Bangalore: 080-22259271, 22156554, 22354108
Hyderabad helpline number: 040-23310680

Sri Sathya Sai Super Speciality Hospital, Puttaparthi and Bangalore came forward to extend medical relief to the injured passengers.

Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Mr.Kiran Kumar Reddy expressed deep sympathy to the family members of the bereaved. MOSR Kotla Jaya Surya Prakash Reddy rushed to the spot at 5.00 a.m. immediately after hearing the news.

Source..Rail News

Bomb scare delays train services in Assam, Bengal


Kokrajhar (KOJ): Train services on Friday were disrupted following a bomb scare on railway tracks between Kokrajhar and Fakiragram stations as several trains, including New Delhi-bound Rajdhani Express, were halted in different stations of lower Assam and north Bengal.

The Dibrugarh-New Delhi Rajdhani Express was halted at Kokrajhar Station from 8.45am for about three hours, while another New Delhi-bound Rajdhani Express was stopped at New Bongaigaon railway station.

The New Jalpaiguri-bound BG Passenger Train was also stopped at Kokrajhar, while Guwahati-bound Saraighat Express and Dadar Express were halted at Fakiragram and Salakati stations, respectively. Ernakulam Express was halted at New Bongaigaon station.

Kokrajhar SP Sunil Kumar said trains were halted at different stations because there was an input that suspected Kamatapur Liberation Organization rebels have planted an IED between Fakiragram and Kokrajhar stations.

He said a thorough inspection of the railway tracks and the trains were conducted to thwart any subversive attempt of the militant outfit.

According to Northeast Frontier Railways officials in Guwahati, the trains were stopped for about two hours following reports of the rebels planting an IED on the tracks.

However, security forces could not find any explosive on the rail tracks.

Meanwhile, the plying of trucks and other vehicles on national highways in western Assam was thin in the morning as the All Assam Minority Students’ Union and All Bodoland Minority Students’ Union called a blockade on Friday in protest against the killing of a farmer in Gossaigaon on December 24.

Though the blockade was withdrawn, locals were unaware of the development.

Hence, very few vehicles were seen on the highways in the morning.

Source..Rail News

Now Book Railway Reservation through Simple SMS! – an IRCTC/CRIS initiative

Cover art

A user’s guide, comparisons and limitations of the railway’s latest SMS based ticketing servicetargeting the mobile phone population

Indian Railways now provides enough options for you to avoid the queue at the booking counter. The latest is the SMS ticketing service which targets the 80 percent mobile phone population in India.

Railways has launched the service to book tickets through SMS on July 1. You do not need to download any app and do not even need a phone with internet connection. This is a smart move because only less than 5 percent of India owns a smart phone among the 80 percent who own mobile phones in India.

As with any new service, there are many questions and apprehensions regarding the service; there are a few pointers hence on how to book tickets using the SMS ticketing method.

There are two numbers through which people could book tickets through SMS: 139 and 5676714

Booking through 139

This is a simple process and involves two steps, sending the travel information (date of journey, number of passengers, train number) and getting a transaction id and paying for the ticket. Before getting on to booking your ticket with 139 on SMS, you need the following essentials:
An IRCTC account for which you have to register at
A mobile number registered both with your bank and IRCTC. A registered mobile number is the one in the records with your bank and can also be used for your banking needs. This same number should be in the records of IRCTC else the SMS ticketing will return an error.
A four-digit Mobile Money Identifier (MMID) code needed for the payment process. To register yourbank account for MMID, choose your bank from a list <hyperlink ‘list’ to> of 26 banks which offer this service.

You can click on the bank in the list which will direct you to bank site which explains the procedure for availing an MMID. For most banks, all one has to do is send one’s MMID followed by the last four digits of your account number from a registered account number to this number. The MMID is sent almost instantly.

Once armed with an IRCTC account, MMID and a registered mobile number, you are ready to book your ticket.

To start, SMS, BOOK <TravelDate(DDMM)> (upto 6 passengers) to 139 to book your ticket.

You will receive a message in the following format:

Transaction id, Ticket Amount, Service Charges, Total Amount Seat status. For Payment: SMS PAY IMPS IRCTCUserID to 139

Decoding the above message:

The customer will get a message with a unique transaction id of seven digits, the amount of the ticket, added service charge, total amount and the status of availability of seats. For payment, the format for SMS code to be sent to 139 will be as follows:


This where you need to get an OTP. OTP is one-time password provided by the banks for safe banking. Different banks have different procedures for OTP. For example, with ICICI Bank it can be requested by sending ‘OTP’ from a registered mobile number to a specific number provided by ICICI Bank. You can also request it on your registered email id.

Where TID is Transaction id.

IMPS is used when you want to use the mobile payment gateway to pay for the ticket.

OTP or one-time password

IRCTC User Id is your IRCTC user name.

Once your details are verified, your ticket will be booked and you will get a congratulatory message about your ticket booking.

Tickets can be cancelled by sending CAN followed by PNR number and IRCTC user ID to 139. This is for full cancellation. For partial cancellation, the customer needs to send CAN followed by PNR number, IRCTC user ID and passenger name and number.

Booking through 5676714

This method is a little different method of booking tickets. For this method too, the customer would need a mobile number registered with IRCTC and his/her bank account. Apart from IMPS, this also provides the facility to pay by ‘mWallet’ which is a mobile payment platform where payments can be made from an existing account known as ‘Zipcash’.

To register on ‘Zipcash’, all a customer needs to do is send ZIP to 56767 after which a login name and PIN number will be sent to the mobile phone number. You can recharge your Zipcash account online at and pay through that when you book your ticket.

To start with the process, SMS START IRCTC user id to 5676714. This message again should be sent from a registered mobile number.

As a reply, the customer will receive the format for sending the SMS along with instructions for booking the ticket. One can get further clarifications by sending HELP to 56767.

The format is as follows:

BOOK Date of journey in DD/MM/YY format, Train number, class, passenger name, age, gender. This is valid for only four passengers.

If all the fields are entered correctly, the customer will receive the following reply:

As mentioned above, payment can be made through IMPS, which is the same as the payment method when ticket is booked through 139 or through MPAY. MPAY is the mobile wallet application through which payments can be made using Zipcash.

For payment, the following SMS needs to be sent to 5676714:

For IMPS method: Pay IMPS

For MPAY method: Pay MPAY

Instructions in both cases would be sent as a reply to the customer. In case of IMPS, customer will have to proceed with MMID and OTP received from the bank to complete the transaction, just as when using 139. Money would be deducted in one step in case of MPAY system where the customers use Zipcash to pay for the ticket.


While both the methods provide an easy way to book tickets, you cannot book tickets under any quota and not between 8am and 12am. Everything is in English, which is again a limitation as the target population of mobile owners is not all English-speaking. Both the payment options need you to be under the umbrella of banked population which is also not true of all the people this service is targeting. Hopefully, such shortcomings will be taken care of once the system starts running and changes are made accordingly.


In booking with both 139 and 5676714, the 139 method looked easier as it was just a two-step process. In booking with 5676714, the payment step was further divided into two more steps which looked complicated when compared with 139. Of course, 5676714 gives an option to book using Zipcash which will be an easier method for those who already have Zipcash accounts for making other payments. 139 also allows you to book tickets for six passengers in one go while 5676714 allows for only four.

Source..Rail News

IRCTC Launches Windows 8 App

App for Windows Smartphone,Tablet and PC. Click HERE to Download User Manual: IRCTC Window 8 App Guide

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has launched an Official Mobile App for Windows 8. The App developed along with Microsoft, will provide users another channel to book tickets beyond the portal, including for Windows Smartphone (Mobile Phone), Windows 8 tablet or PC. IRCTC expects the number e-ticket bookings to increase with the introduction of this app. IRCTC’s new App provides booking facility of Railway tickets online and offers other services like checking reservation status, train schedules, train routes, availability of tickets, cancellation, booking history, recent history, favourites, add passengers as contacts and roaming the transactions between multiple devices.
So now you can plan your travel, book train ticketsand do much more on-the-go, using your Windows Mobile, Smartphone Phone, Windows 8 tablet or PC. IRCTC has embarked on an application (app) journey, with the launch of the official IRCTC app. The app has been made availableexclusively for Windows devices. It will be available throughout the day excepting 0800-1200 hrs and 2330-0030 hrs.

To use the app, you must first generate a TPIN by logging onto The TPIN will be generated for your registered phone number and the bookings should be made through the registered phone number. The app lights up inbuilt features of your Windows 8 and Windows Phone devices to bring you a delightful experience. Destination names show up quickly, planning your journey, making train choices and booking tickets is more seamless and immersive.

The rich and immersive app perform all the tasks already available on the IRCTC web site. What’s more? You also get some new and exciting features including visual maps of train routes, Windows Phone live tiles lighting up as train tickets and access to saved traveler profiles from multiple devices among many others. Features:-
Plan my travel
Check PNR Status
Booking History
Frequent Passenger Info
Quick Booking
Recent History
Live Notifications

Announcing the availability of the app, Mr. Rakesh Tandon, CMD, IRCTC said, “We feel the app is ideal for the modern consumer who is always on the move. Windows is the most trusted and widely used platform and offers the requisite securityrequired while handling vast amounts of personal and financial user data.”

IRCTC at an average is booking around 4 lakh tickets a day. But people have always faced connectivity issues and payment problems on the website.

Earlier this year during the Railway Budget the then Minister of Railways, Pawan Kumar Bansal, had said that, by the end of this year, India’s railway ticketing website will undergo a major overhaul to support booking of 3 times more number of tickets per minute and 6 times more number of simultaneous users.

In June this year, a railway ticket booking system via sms, for people without internet was also introduced, which was earlier released on a pilot basis.

Recently IRCTC’s online shopping site powered by Yebhi went live at The service retails in clothing, accessories, home decor and electronics.

Source..Rail News





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7th Pay Commission & Employee News Center