Now, a cell to check quality of food served in trains

The administration of North Central Railways has introduced Catering Complain Monitoring Cell to keep an eye over the quality of the food and food products served in trains and at the railway platforms.

Sandeep Mathur, Chief Public Relations Officer, North Central Railways informed that so far there had been no telephone number on, which the passengers could call and register their complaints about the quality of the food served to them. Keeping this in mind, a few phone numbers have been released.

These numbers will work as helpline numbers and the passengers will be required to register their complaints on it.

This effort will go a long way in keeping a check over the quality of food served to the passengers both on board the trains and on the railway platforms.

For Kanpur, Mirzapur, Allahabad, Etawah, Tundala and Aligarh, the passengers can call on 0532-2407977

Jhansi, Gwalior, Lalitpur and Banda 0510-2473470

Agra, Mathura, Kosikala 0562-2421026

Passengers can also call on Allahabad Head Office for registering their complaint. The number is 0532-2230155

CR to spend lakhs to shoo away birds

his summer, the Central Railway is likely to spend more than Rs 2 crore to keep birds away from overhead wires and pests out of railway coaches. Railway authorities are scouting for repellents and gels that will keep birds, especially crows, away from overhead equipment (OHE) and pantograph of
trains, which are preferred nesting places.

On Friday, the Central Railway invited tenders for supplying insulating non-toxic bird repellent gel and paint on OHE structures beyond Kalyan towards north (up to Karjat and Kasara). The cost of applying the repellent gel and painting the overhead equipment will be at least Rs 39 lakh.

Tenders for similar work on the 60-km stretch between Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) and Kalyan will be called for soon. The approximate cost will be Rs 60 lakh.

“The problem of birds becomes acute during summer when it’s nesting season, especially along creeks. Birds build nests on portals that hold overhead wires. This causes a short circuit and power failure that delays services,” a senior Central Railway official said on condition of anonymity.

When overhead wires or a train’s pantograph come in contact with twigs used to build nests, it could disrupt power supply and affect the running of trains.

Crows often get caught between the train’s pantograph and overhead wires causing serious damage to the pantograph that supplies power for the train to run on.

“Even small scraps of wire and strings found in nests can cause a short circuit. So we will apply non-toxic repellents, which will prevent birds from sitting on wires or building nests,” said S Mudgerikar, chief public relations officer, Central Railway.

The Central Railway has carried out research on what chemicals it could use so that the birds are not harmed.

The railways will also treat coaching depots at CST, Kurla Terminus and Wadi Bunder, where trains are kept for maintenance and other works, with pesticides. The railways will be spending Rs 1.76 crore to get rid of rodents, cockroaches, bed bugs and mosquitoes.

Published in: on November 21, 2010 at 3:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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WR Guards to check rooftop travel

Western Railway Guards are a miffed bunch after they have been given an additional job responsibility — to clear local train rooftops of travellers. Following an increase in reports of deaths due to electrocution, the Western Railway (WR) administration took the decision to ensure commuter safety.

The Guards have been instructed to ensure that train rooftops are clear and trains run as per schedule. Railway staff at various stations have also been asked to make efforts to dissuade commuters from travelling dangerously, and make sure violators get off the train.

Says a WR Guard, “Now we are expected to leave our core duty and look out for commuters on rooftops. If something goes wrong, Guards will be held responsible.” Guards claim that in most cases, offenders are agile enough to run on the roof to evade being being caught. This is when they fall or get electrocuted.

“We will oppose the decision if the administration forces Guards to take responsibility for offenders who travel on rooftops,” said DY Mahale, of the Western Railway Employees Union.

Western Railway Chief Public Relations Officer Sharat Chandrayan said, “The Guards are not responsible for offenders travelling on rooftops. They have merely been instructed to dissuade such behaviour.”

The numbers
Last year, the WR registered cases against 2,134 commuters for travelling on rooftops of trains in the suburban section alone. 731 of these were sent to jail.

Train Describer System to automate public address mechanism in Railways

In what may come as a huge relief for lakhs of commuters, CR is planning to install sensors adjacent to tracks, to monitor train movements in real time.

This Train Describer System will automate the entire public address mechanism. The sensors will transmit data about where a train is, to the central control room. It will pass through an interface with the public address system, feeding updates into indicators and modifying announcements.

Srinivas Mudgerikar, Chief Public Relations Officer, CR, said, “Announcements will be centralised. All announcers will then have to monitor the system and make announcements only in emergency situations.”

Presently, information on the status of trains has to be taken from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus control room and then updated at every station through a hotline. “Today if a train is stuck between two stations, its scheduled time and expected time on the indicators cannot be updated immediately,” he added.

Overhauling the system will cost CR about Rs 36 crore. CR hopes to have the system up and running on the CST-Kalyan belt in a year.

Commuters feel one of their biggest grievances will be addressed if the new system comes through. “If we are informed immediately, it will help us make alternative arrangements, especially during the rainy season,” says commuter Devesh Rathod.

But will the data loggers fitted alongside the tracks work when they are flooded during the monsoons? “The sensors will be water-resistant,”says Mudgerikar.