Indian Railways wishes to achieve more
S Vishnu Sharmaa, INN/Chennai, @Svs037
Indian Railways has always been playing a prime role when it comes to nation building. Amidst a situation when we will bid adieu to 2019 and welcome 2020, the achievements of the mammoth organisation deserves a recollection.
The year was on a pleasant note as Railways recorded highest ever capital expenditure of Rs 1,60,176 crore in 2019-20 budget estimates. Security received a top priority as the first Railway Commando Battalion ‘CORAS’ came into existence.
The main motto behind establishing the security force is to tackle the problems posed by naxalism and terrorism to Railways. The year 2019 is also known as the safest year for Indian Railways. For, 2019 is said to have recorded nil passenger deaths in rail accidents.
Expectations of enhancing speed limits of trains was also went up this year. The government transporter sanctioned increasing the speed to 160 kmph on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Howrah routes by 2022-2023.
When it comes to electrification of railway network, there is considerable performance during this year. A total of 1,106 Rkm of network across the nation has been electrified. This year is the time when doubling and guage conversion and development of new lines witnessed an increase by over 34 percent.
That’s not all, even elimination of manned level-crossing also saw an increase by 220 percent. Moments were a bit disturbing when the unpleasant news about Train 18 did the rounds recently.
The news was that Train 18 would be shelved, and new trainsets would be imported instead of allowing Integral Coach Factory (ICF) manufacturing Train 18 did not go well with many sections.
But the moments reached a pleasant note with Union Minister for Railways Piyush Goyal declaring that ICF would continue to manufacture Train 18.
Cleanliness in trains also got a top priority with Swachchta Diwas celebrations on Indian Railway premises across the nation which did good emphasis on cleanliness and sanitation. A total of 24,493 bio-toilets are said to have been established in trains during April to August this year.
The present year witnessed Indian Railways banning single use plastic. It was banned on 2 October which also marked the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
This year also saw Indian Railways upgrading as many as 95 trains with Utkrisht rakes. Many trains got LHB coaches also during this year.
Charminar Express and Navjeevan Express are among the prominent trains to get LHB coaches. This year also witnessed an increase of 29 percent in production of coaches. The aim for Indian Railways is to win more laurels in the coming year.