Aug 20, 2014

Special Incentive For J&K



            In continuation to its best possible efforts to maintain and further upgrade its services in various fields, Western Railway has now put their best foot forward to use technology for disseminating important information regarding status of bills etc. to its vendors, contractors and suppliers.
            According to a WR Press Release, Western Railway’s Finance department has implemented this useful system, under which SMS and email based information will be given to vendors. They will get system triggered real time information about their bills etc. through SMS alerts. Various automatic reports like TDS, Form 16 etc. can also be had through email just by sending a SMS in a pre-defined format. To implement this modern technological system, concerned unit of Finance department of W. Rly. is obtaining details about Vendor/Firm’s name, PAN No, Vendor Code, Mobile No. and email ID.
            This new system will result in various advantages such as real time tracking of bills, faster processing, transparency etc.

(Sharat Chandrayan)
Chief Public Relations Officer

CR-Change in opening date for booking of Premium AC Specials of 4.9.2014

Central Railway Press Release Change in opening date for booking of Premium AC Specials of 4.9.2014 
It is advised that the booking date for trip of 04.09.2014 for Train No. 02045/02046 Weekly Premium AC special between Lokmanya Tilak Terminus- Karmali- Lokmanya Tilak Terminus was inadvertently mentioned as 21.08.2014, which is now being corrected as 20.08.2014. Halts and composition will remain same as earlier.BOOKING THROUGH INTERNET o­nLY. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: August 18, 2014
Source - This new comes to you from Public Relations Department, Central Railway, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai. 

(Narendra A Patil)
Chief Public Relations Officer

Longest Foot Over Bridge on Indian Railways inaugurated at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai

A newly constructed longest foot over bridge o­n Indian Railways was inaugurated by Shri Arvind Sawant, Hon'ble Member of Parliament  at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai o­n 18.8.2014.  Shri Anil Desai, Hon'ble Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha), Smt. Annie Shekhar, Hon'ble MLA,
​Shri Sunil Kumar Sood, General Manager, Central Railway, ​Shri Rakesh Saxena, Managing Director, Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation, Shri A.K. Mittal, Additional General Manager, Central Railway, 
Shri Mukesh Nigam, Divisional Railway Manager, Mumbai Division, Central Railway and other senior officials were present o­n the occasion.
The new foot over bridge connects platform number 1 to 18 (platform number 1 to 7 o­n suburban and platform number 8 to 18 o­n main line) at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai. It is the longest foot over bridge o­n Indian Railways with a length of 364 meter (270 meter new FOB connecting 94 meter existing FOB) and a widh of 5.3 meter constructed at a cost of Rs.8.5 crore.  Passengers coming to and from Sir J.J. Flyover o­n the West side and P. D'Mello Road o­n the East side will be benefited immensely by this FOB. 
-- ---- ---- ---
Date: August 18, 2014
source - This news comes to you from the Public Relations Department, Central Railway, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai.
(V. Chandrasekar)

18 More Ganapati Specials between Lokmanya Tilak Terminus- Ratnagiri

Railways have decided to run 18 specials between Lokmanya Tilak Terminus and Ratnagiri to clear the extra rush of passengers during Ganapati festival. The details are as under - 

Train No. 00115 Special will leave Lokmanya Tilak Terminus at 13.45 hrs o­n 28.8.2014, 30.8.2014, 31.8.2014, 1.9.2014, 3.9.2014, 4.9.2014, 6.9.2014, 7.9.2014 and 8.9.2014 (9 trips) and arrive Ratnagiri at 21.50 hrs same day.

Train No. 00116 Special will leave Ratnagiri at 05.15 hrs o­n 28.8.2014, 30.8.2014, 31.8.2014, 1.9.2014, 3.9.2014, 4.9.2014, 6.9.2014, 7.9.2014 and 8.9.2014 (9 trips) and arrive Lokmanya Tilak Terminus at 13.10 hrs same day.

Halts:Thane, Panvel, Roha, Mangaon, Veer, Khed, Chiplun, Savarda and Sangameshwar.

Composition: 10 Second class seating, 2 General second class and 2 General second class cum Guards' brake van.

Reservation:  Bookings open date will be advised later.

(V. Chandrasekar)



Ministry of Railways have decided to increase the frequency of 17613 / 17614 Pune – Hazur Sahib Nanded Express from Weekly to Tri-Weekly w.e.f. 2.9.2014 Ex Pune and w.e.f. 1.9.2014 Ex Nanded with revised timings. The details are as under:-

TRAIN NO.   FROM                           PRESENT                 REVISED FREQUENCY

17613           Pune                             Sat                             Tue, Thu & Sat
                                                                                             w.e.f. 2.9.2014

17614          Hazur Sahib Nanded     Fri                               Mon, Wed & Fri
                                                                                             w.e.f. 1.9.2014


Train No. 17613 will leave Pune at 19.55 hrs (instead of 22.00 hrs) with effect from 2.9.2014 and arrive Hazur Sahib Nanded at 09.25 hrs (instead of 10.00 hrs)

Train No. 17614 will leave H.S. Nanded at 21.00 hrs (instead of 21.20 hrs) with effect from 1.9.2014 and arrive Pune at 11.00 hrs (instead of 09.20 hrs)
RESERVATION: Bookings for the days of increased frequency of Train No. 17613 will open from 21.8.2014.

(V. Chandrasekar)

India and Czech Republic Sign MoU on Technical Cooperation in the Field of Railway Sector

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on 19.8. 2014 at Rail Bhawan, New Delhi between the Ministry of Railways of the Republic of India and Czech Railways (Ceske Drahy) of the Czech Republic and Association of Czech Railway Industry (ACRI) of the Czech Republic on Technical Cooperation in the field of railway sector by Shri Arunendra Kumar, Chairman/Railway Board and H.E. Miloslav Stasek, Ambassador of Czech Republic. 

The potential cooperation areas mentioned in the MoU are Freight operations- Logistics of automotive transport, Passenger operations – raising of speeds upto 200 kmph; Infrastructure building and management – station development and workshop modernization; Information & communication technologies especially for passenger amenities ; Modernisation of rolling stock; Modernisation of signalling & telecom etc. 

The MoU is valid for a period of three (3) years which can be extended further for successive periods of one (1) year at a time. 

From IR side, Shri A.K. Mittal, Member (Staff), Shri D.P. Pande, Member (Traffic); Shri V.K. Gupta, Member (Engineering); Ms Saroj Rajware, Additional Member (Budget); Shri Girish Pillai, Adviser (Infra), Shri Manoj Kumar Srivastava, EDPP; Shri Mukul Mathur, ED/T/PPP, Shri Vijay Kumar ED/Infra/Mech; Shri Achal Khare, ED/Infra/Civil, Shri Devendra Singh, ED/Planning, Shri Pramod Sharma, ED/PSU, Shri Sandeep Srivastava, Dirctor Planning (Spl) Shri Mukul Kumar, Director Transport Planning were present. From Czech side, Mr. Jiri Janicek, Commercial Counsellor, Czech Republic, Ms Katerina Gregorova, Economic & Consular Affairs, Embassy of Czech Republic, Mr. Jan Kaiser, Embassy of Czech Republic and Shri S.K. Mandal, Managing Director, Technip Engineering & Consultancy Services were present.

Source - pib

Chinese Protesters Rail Against John Liu at Queens Forum

A group of Chinese protesters crashed a candidates forum at a Queens hotel last night, attacking John Liu for being an agent of the Chinese Communist government.

The protesters, likely belonging to the Falun Gong movement, unfurled a banner in front of Mr. Liu as he prepared to speak. One of Mr. Liu’s supporters quickly leaped up to rip the banner out of their hands and hotel security was eventually called to cart the protesters away.

“Arrest John Liu to Prevent His Further Harm to the U.S,” the banner read.

A sobbing woman in a neck brace, speaking in Mandarin, accused Mr. Liu of having ties to the Chinese government, according to Mandarin speakers present at the forum. Event organizers repeatedly, with little success at first, ordered her to leave as one man cried “John Liu go home!” After more than ten minutes–Liu supporters tried to shout the crying woman down–she eventually departed.

Mr. Liu, a former city comptroller and councilman, appeared more amused then disturbed after the protesters left.

“These people who voice their opinions, I think, they’re certainly entitled like everybody else to voice their opinions. I’ve been told they are a part of my friends at the Falun Gong who have been following me for years mainly because they firmly believe I am a Communist spy from China,” Mr. Liu said.

The crowd packed into a ballroom at the Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel laughed.

“You can make your own conclusions,” he added.

The sobbing female protester, Fu Yuxia, told the Falun Gong-associated Epoch Times that she did not hail from the spiritual movement that is viewed warily by the Chinese government, though the manner of attacks against Mr. Liu are consistent with past Falun Gong protests. Mr. Liu was born in Taiwan and has spent the vast majority of his life in the United States, forging close ties with the Asian-American communities of Flushing that fueled his successful runs for City Council and comptroller before a fund-raising scandal derailed his mayoral bid last year.The forum, hosted by the Minkwon Center and several other immigrant rights groups, brought Mr. Liu and his rival, State Senator Tony Avella, into the opulent downtown Flushing hotel. The Democrats took questions separately from a panel and did not meet face-to-face, a fact that irked Mr. Liu, who threw several jabs at Mr. Avella. By the time the protesters arrived, Mr. Avella was gone.

On actual policy positions, Mr. Liu and Mr. Avella differed little. Each backed a higher minimum wage, the Dream Act, public financing of state elections and other liberal priorities. While Mr. Avella did not take aim at Mr. Liu, the former comptroller assailed Mr. Avella once more for betraying Democrats and progressives by joining a group of breakaway Democrats that governs the senate with the Republican Party (the Independent Democratic Conference recently agreed to ally themselves with the mainline Democrats after the fall elections.)

Policy, however, took a back seat to the brief chaos.

“These are my friends. They’ve been tailing me for the last ten years, last five years maybe,” Mr. Liu, with a smile, told the Observer after the forum.
Source..times union

Chinese rail official gets death sentence in corruption case

(Reuters) - A Beijing court on Wednesday sentenced a former railway official to death for corruption, but promised a reprieve after two years of good behavior, state media reported, in the latest graft case to hit China's sprawling rail network.

Wen Qingliang was sacked as head of the rail bureau in the southwestern city of Kunming in 2011 for "discipline" problems, the usual euphemism for corruption in China.

The Beijing court found that Wen took more than 20 million yuan ($3.3 million) in bribes between 2005 and 2011 while working in the northern province of Shanxi "to provide favors to companies bidding on railway projects", the official Xinhua news agency said.

His death sentence will be commuted after two years, Xinhua added, which generally means that after two years of good behavior he will end up with a life sentence.

The reprieve was granted because authorities recovered most of his ill-gotten gains, the report said.

Wen's mistress, Zhong Hua, who is accused of colluding with him, will be given a separate trial, it added.

China's railways have faced increased scrutiny from anti-corruption officials and the public after a scandal in which former railways minister Liu Zhijun was prosecuted for corruption and abuse of power.

One of several officials implicated in the scandal, Liu received a suspended death sentence last summer. In China, that usually implies life in prison.

The country's railways have confronted numerous problems in the past few years, including heavy debts from funding new high-speed lines, waste and fraud. The government has pledged to open the rail industry to private investment in a big way.

The sector suffered a major blow to its image when 40 people were killed in a crash between two high-speed trains in 2011.

Stagecoach and FirstGroup train sights on TransPennine rail franchise

Current incumbent FirstGroup and Stagecoach are set to fight it out for the right to operate the TransPennine Express rail franchise.PA Archive/Press Association Ima

Major Scottish transport firms Stagecoach and FirstGroup are set to fight it out for the right to operate the TransPennine Express rail franchise.

The companies, respectively based in Perth and Aberdeen, were named yesterday as two of three operators left in the running for the franchise award along with a joint venture company formed by Newcastle-based Go-Ahead and Keolis of France.

FirstGroup has held the franchise since 2004.

The UK Government said all three companies had passed the pre-qualification stage of the bid process for the route.

“We will be asking these companies to come up with innovative and ambitious proposals that will ensure a truly world-class rail network for the region,” Rail Minister Claire Perry said.

The TPE franchise provides inter-urban rail services across the north of England and connects major cities such as Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield and Newcastle.

It also includes a number of cross-border services to Scotland.

The new franchise award will cover between seven and nine years. The successful bidder will be announced next autumn for an expected contract start in February of 2016.

The TPE franchise is being taken forward along side a separate Northern franchise which has attracted interest from Abellio Northern, Arriva Rail North and Govia Northern.

The franchise is expected to run for seven to nine years, with provision for an extension of one year at the DfT’s discretion.

An announcement about the successful bidder is expected in autumn next year, with the contract expected to start in February 2016.

Sir Richard Leese of Rail North said: “Both franchises are due to be awarded by October 2015 and, as they develop their bids, each of the bidders will need to set out how they will capitalise on the biggest programme of rail modernisation ever.”

A Stagecoach spokesman said: “We look forward to engaging with local people and other stakeholders to develop a package of ambitious and robust proposals that will improve services and deliver better value for money to passengers and taxpayers.”

FirstGroup managing director Vernon Barker said: “First TransPennine Express now carries 26 million passengers a year, twice as many as at the start of the franchise, and we recently introduced new, longer, electric trains on the Anglo-Scottish routes which provide an improved timetable and increased capacity.”
Source..the courier

PRESS: Serco Misses Out On Northern Rail Franchises - The Times

As reported in later editions of yesterday's Evening Times, train travellers will face a 2.5% increase on their peak ticket prices from January 2015.

Pressure groups say the move by ScotRail will force commuters to abandon the railways and use cars instead, undermining the Government's plan to increase public transport use.

Transport Scotland, which campaigns for a sustainable and socially inclusive transport system, has criticised the soaring fares.

Paul Tetlaw, a Transport Scotland board member, said: "While it is true that fares are not going up as much they are in England, it is still the case that the cost of travelling by train has gone up more than the cost of motoring.

"If we carry on with fare increases at this level it will be counter-productive in terms of Government policy."

The increase comes after the Office for National Statistics announced yesterday that July's RPI inflation rate was 2.5% .

In Scotland, off-peak fares will be frozen in January, however rail users will still have to pay more for 60% of journeys come the new year.

Robert Samson, manager at Passenger Focus, said "While any increase is not good news for passengers, those in Scotland will be pleased that regulated fares continue to be capped at the level of inflation."

A ScotRail spokeswoman said: "Fares for four in 10 journeys will be frozen in Scotland."

"There will be no rise for off peak fares in January. And peak time increases will be limited to inflation.

"This means that, overall, our fare increases will be below inflation at a time when energy and fuel costs are rising much faster than RPI."
Source..evening times





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