Ride to Matheran on steam engine powered by diesel

From June, railway enthusiasts will again have a chance to witness a “steam engine” hissing its way up the hills of Matheran. The engine was last seen in Matheran’s hills in November 2011.

It was pulled out of operation after embers from the coal-fired steam engine sparked fire on dry grass along the route. After the forest department and locals objected to the plying of the coal-fired train, the Central Railway (CR) has now found a solution to the problem. “Instead of coal, the newly modified steam locomotive will be fired by diesel,” said CR’s divisonal railway manager, Mumbai, Mukesh Nigam.

The modification of the B-794 steam locomotive is being carried out at Golden Rock Workshop, Tiruchirapalli, in South Eastern Railway at an approximate cost of Rs 20 lakh. “The steam engine has its own charm and there were many requests to run the services through such locomotives,” Nigam added.

Despite the modification, it will have the authentic sounds of the steam whistle. The engine will also get a fresh coat of corrosion-free glossy paint.

The refurbished locomotive is scheduled to arrive in the last week of May. The trial will be carried out for a few days after which the locomotive will be pressed into service in June. The train will be run only as a chartered service. It will be able to pull three coaches. The tariff is yet to be finalized. An official said, “Due to huge demand, we decided to re-introduce the service.”


Mechanised laundry built at Sankrail for SER passengers

With a view to provide clean linen and thereby more comfortable journey to passengers, South Eastern Railway has laid emphasis on mechanisation of laundries. Recently, a mechanised laundry has been commissioned by the agency entrusted to wash and clean linen (bed rolls) provided to passengers in train.

The mechanised laundry built in an area of 6000 Sq ft at Sankrail in West Bengal is undertaking washing of bedrolls and linen used in various trains with an output of 6000 bed sheets and 3000 face towels per day.

Altogether 35 employees are working in two shifts to improve the quality of washing of bedrolls. A number of sophisticated machines including Washer Extractor, Hydro Extractor, Filter and Softener, Calendaring Machine, Tumbler Drier which ensure high quality cleaning methods have been installed in the Sankrail Laundry, so that passenger travelling in SER trains are satisfied with the linen supplied. With functioning of this mechanised laundry, passenger complaints regarding linen supplied in coaches have come down significantly. During March, 2013, SER has got only 4 Bedroll related complaints in comparison to 18 and 19 nos in January and February, 2013 respectively. South Eastern Railway’s first Mechanised Laundry was commissioned at Tatanagar in March, 2012. With a view to ensure passenger satisfaction regarding the quality of bedrolls supplied in trains, SER is in the process of commissioning two more mechanized laundries at Chakradharpur and Hatia.

This will be followed by a large mechanised laundry at Santragachi. After commissioning of all these mechanised laundries at Chakradharpur, Hatia and Santragachi, it is expected that SER will be able to achieve significant improvement in Linen Management. UNI BM 1647 NNNN


Railways safety tips for women commuters

In the wake of sudden spurt in cases of crime against women travelling in trains, the Chakradharpur division of the South Eastern Railway (SER) zone has announced issuing fresh guidelines to the women commuters travelling in the day hours.

With six major incidents of sexual harassment this year, the authorities are pulling out all stops to ensure the safety of women commuters and nab the miscreants on trains originating or passing through various junctions under CKP division.

“Earlier we had specific safety guidelines for women commuters travelling at night. But now we are coming with safety guidelines for the women travelling during the day,” said Chakradharpur senior commercial divisional manager A N Biswas.

The new guidelines that are likely to come into effect from July 1 aim to check crime against women.

According to a senior railway officer, the guidelines for women commuters is under consideration and shall be finalized following inputs from all the stakeholders including suggestions from the women rights groups.

Sources said women commuters travelling during the day would be advised to be watchful of the people boarding the train.

On part of the railways, it is most likely that number of women cops on-board the trains will be increased. Women RPF constables in plain clothes would be deployed on long distance superfast and express trains.

Recently, the CKP railway had announced taking help of hawkers on trains and at railway stations to keep an eye on offenders. “We cannot reveal the specifics of the guidelines right now. We are consulting with the security agencies (RPF and GRP) for formulating journey guidelines for women passengers,” said Biswas.


Published in: on April 11, 2013 at 3:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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SE Rlys’ move to distribute soap strips to passengers in AC coaches.

Faced with rampant allegation of lack of hygiene facilities in train lavatories, South Eastern Railway has started distributing paper-soap strips to commuters travelling in air conditioned classes in six long distance Mail / Express trains originating from Howrah. The six trains are ~ Howrah-Ahmedabad Express, Howrah-Mumbai CST Gitanjali Express, Howrah-Mumbai Mail, Howrah-Chennai Mail, Howrah-Chennai Coromandel Express and the Howrah-Yesvantpur Express. The paper-soap strips are being distributed to the passengers travelling in 1st AC, 2-nd Ac and 3-rd AC coaches. South Eastern Railway plans to extend the facility to more mail / express trains in future. Also, it is planning to distribute among train travellers a de-odorant sanitising disinfectant (phenyl-like substance) solution for use in the toilets.


Published in: on June 10, 2012 at 3:24 am  Leave a Comment  
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UK rail sector keen to partner Indian Railways

BL reported that UK’s rail sector is keen to become partner in the Indian Railways’ bid to be a key player in the country’s growth, according to Mr Tim Gray International Business Development Director Railway Industry Association UK and the leader of a visiting 10 member delegation supported by the UK Trade and Investment.

Mr Gray while addressing an interactive seminar, organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry – Eastern Region said that “RIA and its members want to continue to build partnerships with organizations in India.”

Mr Gray observed that “UK industry has much to offer as technology and expertise are our strengths and we’re looking for right opportunities.”

RIA, as it was pointed out has 160 firms as members representing, among others, passenger train manufacturers, signaling and telecom firms, track renewal contractors, rolling stock leasing companies, component manufacturers and consultants and specialist service providers such as asset management and maintenance, R&D, safety and risk, economic planning and commercial and project management.

Mr AP Mishra GM of South Eastern Railway told the visiting delegation that PPP models were receiving a good deal of attention of the Indian Railways in implementation of various projects such as dedicated freight corridor, world-class stations, commercial utilization of surplus lands, setting up of special purpose vehicles and joint ventures for the manufacture of locos, coaches and wagons, operation of container trains, construction of inland container depots and container freight stations, rail side warehouses, infrastructure projects such as port connectivity, freight terminals, logistics parks, doubling and gauge conversion projects and even for hospitality and tourism projects.

(Sourced from Business Line)


Published in: on March 7, 2010 at 11:05 am  Comments (1)  
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Rail meet to address logistics needs

Railway Board chairman KC Jena held a high level meeting on Saturday here to discuss a detailed plan being prepared by the Indian Railways
to address the fast growing logistics needs- both for passenger and freight services- in the Greater Kolkata metropolitan area.

The plan, which is perhaps the first of its kind being tried out by the Railways’ system to tackle fast growing needs of Kolkata and its suburban area, essentially revolves around an integrated approach by Eastern (ER), South Eastern (SER) and Metro Railway to tackle the demanding transportation needs of the area over the next 15-20 years.

The meeting was attended by Deepak Krishan, General Manager, Eastern Railway, AKJain, General Manager, South Eastern Raiway and VN Tripathi, General Manager, Metro Railway and principal head of departments of all the three Railways based in Kolkata.

“A detailed and holistic plan is being worked out encompassing all the three railways, namely ER, SER and Metro to identify the needs of the greater Kolkata region. We are in the process of shortlisting a consultant who will help us prepare the blueprint for its execution,” a top Railway official told ET.

The Railways’ technical services arm, RITES, is likely to be one of the agencies shortlisted for the consultancy. “A decision on the appointment of the consultant is expected shortly. We will have to decide whether it is through an open tender or through a single tender, he added.

“We have decided on the terms of reference for the job and have completed an internal study to make a detailed assessment of the number of passengers and freight customers as well as the number of freight terminals in and around Kolkata. This will help us understand the need to either relocate or augment these terminals to meet future needs,” the official said.

The plan will be worked out with other key agencies involved in growth and development of the city namely, Kolkata Metropolitan Development Agency (KMDA).

The meeting also reviewed the performance of the three railways and also discussed the launch of Metro Railways’ extended services upto Garia. The service in that stretch is likely to operational by end of March 2009.

Published in: on January 27, 2009 at 4:22 pm  Leave a Comment  
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