Jul 19, 2014

Mechanized Cleaning of Trains & Stations

The primary and secondary maintenance, including cleaning of trains, is being carried out in coaching depots which have pit lines/washing lines and prescribed testing facilities for this purpose. Besides, for cleaning railway stations, mechanical gadgets have been introduced along with superior cleaning agents. Mechanized cleaning, rag picking and garbage disposal is also being done. About 31590 trains are being handled by Indian Railways per month. 

On around 47 Railway stations, maintenance facilities were extended during the last three years and the current year. Recommendations of Zonal Railway Users, Consultative Committee (ZRUCC) are examined and proposals for extension of maintenance facilities are considered on merit in this regard. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha.


Railways to Develop 10 Major Stations to International Standards

It has been decided BY Indian Railways to develop at least 10 major stations of metro cities and important junctions to International standards with modern facilities and passenger amenities through Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. 

A dedicated organization, Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation Ltd. (IRSDC) has been set up to undertake such station redevelopment projects. 

Stations to be redeveloped are to be identified based on adequacy of land, redevelopment cost, expected returns from real estate development, capacity of approach infrastructure to handle enhanced traffic, etc. 

Such projects require detailed techno-economical feasibility studies and statutory clearances from local authorities. Though Railways have been making sustained efforts towards expediting various issues, no targets can be indicated. 

As the entire cost of the station redevelopment is to be met by commercial development on a PPP mode, no Railway funds are required to be allocated. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .


Railways Takes Measures to Improve Passenger Amenities

Arrangements for drinking water have been made at all stations on Indian Railways as per norms. Further, improvement/augmentation of passenger amenities including provision of safe drinking water at railway stations is a continuous process and work in this regard are undertaken as per requirement subject to inter-se priority and availability of funds. In addition, Rail Neer and other BIS (Bureau of India Standard) approved packaged drinking water bottles are sold as per the maximum retail price fixed as Rs. 15/- for 1000 ml and Rs. 10/- for 500 ml at stations/trains. 

Representations for stoppage of trains are received at various levels of Railways administration viz. stations, Divisional level, Zonal level and Railway Board’s level. These are examined keeping in view the operational feasibility and commercial viability, and action if found feasible & viable, is taken. 

Demands for additional passenger amenities at stations are received from time to time. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha.


Expenditure Estimated on Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Corridor is Approx. Rs. 63,000 crore

The first sector identified by the Indian Railways for introduction of High Speed trains in the country is Mumbai-Ahmedabad. As regards Semi High Speed trains (160-200 kmph), the sections identified are Delhi-Agra. Delhi-Chandigarh, Delhi-Kanpur, Nagpur-Bilaspur, Mysore-Bengaluru-Chennai; Mumbai-Goa; Mumbai-Ahmedabad; Chennai-Hyderabad and Nagpur-Secunderabad. 

For introduction of High Speed trains on Mumbai-Ahmedabad sector, two studies - one a joint feasibility study, co-financed by India and Japan and another a business development study by French Railways (SNCF) have been undertaken. 

Feasibility study for semi-High speed (upto 200 kmph) between Mumbai-Delhi and Mumbai-Ahmedabad was conducted by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and report submitted in March, 2014. 

Expenditure estimated on Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Corridor is approximately Rs. 63,000 crore. 

The High Speed Rail project will have to be taken up through an appropriate mix of Government support, multilateral/bilateral funding and by alternative means of resource mobilization, including Public-Private Partnership (PPP). 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .


Criteria for Provision of Halt/Stoppage Station of Trains

The extant policy guidelines for provision of stoppage of trains at station inter-alia stipulates that the minimum number of tickets to be sold at the station so as to recover the cost of stoppage (which ranges from Rs. 4376/- to Rs. 5396/- depending upon traction, composition and other factors) should be 40 or more per day per train for sleeper class for a distance of 500 Kms. or its equivalent in terms of cost for mixed class of passengers like AC, General and distance (multiple of 100 Kms.) toward/from destination/originating stations of the train. The policy also provides for additional criteria like population, significance, new developments taking place in and around the station, nature & occupancy of the train whose stoppage has been demanded, operational constraints and effect of the stoppage on the line capacity of the section and punctuality of trains, passing time of the train at station in question and availability of alternative service(s) and occupancy thereof etc. Halt stations are opened on public demand if found financially viable and feasible from operating and engineering points of view. Opening of halt stations is also considered on passenger amenity grounds. 

Requests for provision of stoppage of trains at various stations and opening of halt stations are received at various levels of Railway administration. These are examined and action as found feasible and justified, is taken within the purview of the extant policy guidelines. Experimental stoppages for specifies period are, however, provided to assess the need for the stoppage and its impact on train operation. 

Review of experimental stoppages is and on-going process on Indian Railways and it has been decided to extend all experimental stoppages provided on Indian Railways, upto 30 September, 2014. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .

Railways Enhance Safety of Road Users by not Proving New Level Crossings

The proposals for construction of Road Over Bridges/Road Under Bridges (ROBs/RUBs) in lieu of level crossings, provision of manned level crossings/unmanned level crossings, foot over bridges etc. are normally received by Zonal Railways. As per policy, no new level crossings are provided due to safety consideration. Foot Over Bridges for public use are provided on deposit term basis. 

After completing various formalities regarding the consents for sharing of cost and closure of level crossings from State Govt., proposals received for construction of ROBs/RUBs in lieu of level crossings are further processed for their inclusion in Railway Works Programme. 

Due to limited availability of resources and huge throw forward for already sanctioned works, the works are progressing to the extent possible as per time schedule. To ensure safety of road users and improve train operation, detailed technical rules have been framed for closure & opening of level crossings. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .


Measures Taken by Railways to Augment Earnings and Contain Expenditure

Steps taken to augment resources of Railways to increase earnings:
·         Continuous efforts to capture more and more traffic.
·         Creation of additional capacity and optimum utilization of the existing one.
·         Improved throughput through increased productivity and efficiency.
·         Reduction in wagon turn around time.
·         Simplification and rationalization of tariff.
·         Market responsive and dynamic tariff policies.
·         Customer oriented freight policies.
·         Introduction of engine on load scheme.
·         Terminal incentive schemes.
·         Discount on incremental traffic in empty flow direction and lean season.
·         Introduction of new trains, increase in frequency and extension to existing trains to capture more passenger traffic.
·          Extension of Passenger Reservation System and Unreserved Ticketing System facilities to more and more location.
·         Introduction of passenger profile management system.
·         Deployment of additional coaches in patronized trains.
·         Introduction of premium parcel service.
·         Leasing of Parcel space in trains.
·         Introduction of Liberalized Wagon Investment Schemes.
·         Rail Side Warehousing Terminals through Public Private Partnership.
Steps taken to Control over Expenditure:
·         Constant endeavour on the part of the Railways to avoid wasteful expenditure.
·         Control the growth of non-plan expenditure.
·         Prioritization of expenditure on works for better use of available resources.
·         Improving staff productivity by better man-power planning.
·         Better Asset utilization.
·         Improvement in inventory management.
·         Optimizing the fuel consumption.
·         Tight control over expenditure in areas such as contractual payment, overtime allowance, purchase of material etc.
·         Austerity and economy measures in areas such as hospitality, publicity, advertisements, inaugural ceremonies, seminars and workshops, contingent office expenses etc.
·         Implementation of the guidelines on expenditure control & management circulated by the Ministry of Finance on the Railways also.
·         Rigorous monitoring of expenditure with respect to the monthly budget proportions.
            This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .

Railways Takes Measures to Prevent Derailments

Indian Railways takes following measures taken to prevent derailments:
·         Upgradation of Track Structure consisting of Pre Stressed Concrete (PSC) sleepers, 52 kg., high strength (90kg/mm2 ultimate tensile strength) rails on concrete sleepers, fanshaped layout on PSC sleepers, Steel Channel Sleepers on girder bridges adopted on most of the routes.
·         Track structure is being standardized with 60 kg rails and PSC sleepers on all the Broad Gauge routes, especially on high density routes, to reduce fatigue of rails under higher axle-load traffic.
·         New construction and replacement is done with PSC sleepers only.
·         Long rail panels of 260 Meters/130 Meters length are being manufactured at the steel plants to minimize number of welded joints.
·         Reduction in Thermit welded joints on rails, use of SPURT Cars for Rail flaw detection.
·         All rails and welds are ultrasonically tested as per laid down periodicity.
·         Progressively shifting to flash butt welding which is superior in quality compared to Alumino Thermit (AT) welding.
·         Progressive use of modern track maintenance machines viz. Tie Tamping, Ballast Cleaning Machines, Track Recording Cars, Digital Ultrasonic Flaw Detectors, Self Propelled Ultrasonic Rail Testing Cars, etc.
·         Two, Rail Grinding Machines are being procured.  Rail Grinding and rail lubrication for enhanced rail life and reliability has been recently introduced.
·         Electronic monitoring of track geometry is carried out to detect defects and plan maintenance.
·         Modern Bridge inspection techniques for determining health of the bridges.
·         Introduction of Wheel impact Load Detector (WILD).
·         Regular patrolling of railway tracks at vulnerable locations including night patrolling and intensifying patrolling during foggy weather.
·         To minimize effects of accidents, LHB coaches with Centre Buffer Couplers and having anti-climbing features, are being inducted in the fleet of coaching stock of Indian Railways.
            This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha .

Indian Railways Takes Austerity Measures

Austerity and economy measures are regularly adopted on Railways to ensure saving in expenditure. Further, guidelines of Ministry of Finance on expenditure management and austerity are also followed by Railways. The various measures taken by Railways inter alia include-
Economy & Expenditure Control Measures:
·         Austerity and economy measures in areas such as hospitality, publicity, advertisement, inaugural ceremonies, seminars & workshops, contingent and office expenses etc.
·         Tight control over expenditure in areas such as contractual payment, overtime allowance, purchase of material etc.
·         Controlling the growth of non-plan expenditure.
Cost Cutting Measures:
·         Better asset utilization.
·         Improvement in inventory management.
·         Optimising the fuel consumption.
·         Improving staff productivity by better man-power planning.
·         Prioritisation of expenditure on works for better use of available resources.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.


Railways Conducts Field Trail for Automatic Fire and Smoke Detection System in Running Trains

A pilot project for field trial with Automatic Fire and Smoke Detection system has been taken up in one rake of New Delhi-Bhubaneswar Rajdhani Express. Besides, one LHB (Linke Hofmann Busch) rake in New Delhi-Jammu Tawi Rajdhani and one rake of LHB AC Double Decker coached running between Kachiguda- Tirupati-Guntur have also been provided with such a system. Technical specification has been revised for extended field trial. In the revised specification, Air brake system has been interfaced with Fir and Smoke detection system for automatic application of brakes in trains in emergency situations owing to fire. 

Presently, trials are being conducted only in Air Conditioned (AC) trains as the present design of Automatic Fire and Smoke Detection system is suitable for AC coaches which have regulated circulation of ambient air inside coaches. 

Research Designs & Standards Organisation (RDSO) has developed a tentative technical specification for trial of Automatic Fire and Smoke Detection system suitable for non-AC coaches. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha .


Railways Take Various Measures to Improve Passenger Amenities

Indian Railways take various measures to improve the quality of its services. This is a continuous process. 

• In the area of passenger amenities there has been significant improvement in the level of passenger amenities provided at stations over the years. Comprehensive norms for provision of passenger amenities at various stations already exist including escalators and lifts are being provided at important railway stations. 
• Ticketing facilities/services have been expanded, upgraded, diversifies and made more user-friendly. This is a dynamic process. 
• It is the continuous endeavour of India railways to provide good quality hygienic food to railway passenger. Improvement in the quality of catering services is an on-going process. A mechanism for monitoring and supervision has been put in place by deploying railway personnel, who check quality and hygiene through regular, surprise and periodical inspections and take corrective action. Catering Services Monitoring Cell with a toll number 1800-111-321 at national level has been set up for real time redressal of complaints. Similar monitoring cell are also functioning on zonal railways. A transparent contract awarding, management and monitoring procedure has been defined to ensure quality covering provision of Third party audit of quality and mandatory ISO (Indian Standards Organization) certification of Base Kitchens. 
• Every year new trains are introduced taking into consideration demands in various sectors of the country within the resources available. The demand analysis is based on waiting lists in various sectors of the country, representation made by public representatives, etc. Accordingly, new trains including Special trains, Premium trains, Jansadharan express, Ladies Special suburban services, etc. are introduced. New coaches such as more and more LHB coaches, double decker coaches, etc., are also inducted into the system. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today. 


Railways Takes Steps to Prevent Encroachment of its Land

Railways are engaged in a continuous exercise to prevent encroachments and protect its land by licensing of land to Railway employees for Grow More Food (GMF) scheme, providing boundary wall, tree plantation etc, at vulnerable locations. Encroachers on railway land are dealt with in accordance with the provisions of the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1971 (PPE Act, 1971) as amended from time-to-time. Actual eviction of unauthorized occupants is carried out with the assistance of State Government and police. Complete Land records are maintained, updated regularly and get verified from revenue authorities periodically. Survey of encroachments is also carried out every year and the details of encroachments and their removal are recorded. About 940 hectares of Railway land is under encroachment. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today. 

Source - PIB





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