Escalators on CR, all WR trains to be 12-car soon

Central Railway plans to commission escalators on important stations while Western Railway will upgrade all its nine-car service to 12-car during this financial year. The commitments were given by general managers of both the zonal railways as part of their Independence Day messages.

CR general manager Subodh Jain said, “Commissioning of two escalators each at Dadar, Vikhroli, Thane, Dombivli, Kalyan and Nagpur stations has been planned during this financial year.”
On WR, too, 32 escalators have been planned to be installed at various suburban and non-suburban stations.
WR’s GM Mahesh Kumar said, “We plan to convert all the remaining 196 nine-car suburban services to 12-car. Moreover, 35 new services are proposed to be introduced during the current fiscal.”

Jain said construction of new foot-overbridges at CST, Kurla, Vidyavihar, LTT, Thane, Ambernath and Badlapur stations is in progress. Further, new foot-overbridges have also been planned at Kalyan, Vithalwadi, Karjat and Chembur.

Kumar said new mechanized laundries have also been sanctioned for Mumbai Central and Bandra Terminus to provide clean linen to passengers of long-distance trains.

Jain said platform extension work to accommodate 15-car rakes on CR’s main line is in full swing at Byculla, Kurla, Ghatkopar and Dombivli stations. Moreover, on CR, stateof-the-art, AC dormitories for the convenience of passengers have been constructed and commissioned at Thane and Kalyan stations. Similar dormitories will also be constructed at CST, Dadar and LTT, Jain added. He said, “CR has also sanctioned Rs 37.4 crore for security equipment at 17 important stations.”
On WR, 650 more CCTV cameras for 37 stations are on the cards for further strengthening security.

1st class tourist ticket fares up from Aug 1

Commuters who wish to travel by the first class on purchase of tourist tickets will have to pay higher fare from August 1. The new tariff was approved by the railway board on July 24.
Under the tourist ticket scheme, passengers can travel unlimited times during its validity from any station on the suburban sections of Central and Western Railway. A senior railway official said the fare for tourist ticket for first class was Rs 170 (1 day), Rs 330 (3 days) and Rs 390 (5 days).
According to the new chart, the fare will be now be Rs 210 (for 1 day), Rs 365 (3 days) and Rs 430 (5 days). However, there will be no change in the tariff of second class tourist tickets.
Sources said the railways sold at least 2,000 first class passes in the categories while 1,100 tourists bought those for second-class. These tickets are issued maximum 3 days in advance, excluding the first day of validity. No refund is admissible on unused/partially used tourist tickets. But tourist tickets booked in advance can be cancelled before the day of validity on which charges of Rs 10 for second class and Rs 20 for first class per passenger will be deducted.

Published in: on July 28, 2012 at 7:34 am  Leave a Comment  

Western Railway introduces a new Security helpline No. 1311

WR has introduced a new Security helpline No. 1311 for its suburban commuters. This helpline No. is easier to remember and use. With the introduction of new number, old number 1276 is not operational now.

The suburban commuters of Western Railway can call this number from their mobiles or landline phones in case of emergencies. It has been introduced with immediate effect.,4,268&dcd=860&did=133959372937703991319486E55CB47744CAF040832AE.web103

Published in: on June 15, 2012 at 11:20 am  Leave a Comment  
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WR saves 4 cr every month after AC switch

The switchover to the alternating current (AC) from the direct current (DC) system on Western Railway added an extra Rs 4 crore to its kitty last month.

The savings are also because the AC system is more energy efficient and the transmission and distribution losses are less compared to the DC format. The WR runs 1,250 suburban services. The savings are substantial although the number of services has increased from 1,210 in December 2011.
“In 2011-12, WR was able to save Rs 53 crore after the conversion to the AC system,” said Sharat Chandrayan, WR’s chief public relations officer.

“The savings are bound to be substantial even though there may be an increase in services on WR’s suburban system in the future,” he added. WR has 77 AC-DC compatible rakes on its network.

WR has also registered the project with the United Nations Framework Convention on climate change. “Each rake has the potential to earn 35,000 units of carbon credits. It is estimated that these rakes will reduce overall carbon emissions,” he said. After the Mumbai division switched to the AC system this year, three phase locomotives with regenerative-brakes, which have the potential to save 15 to 17 % energy, have been introduced.

Super Saver

• Savings : 4cr in April

• AC-DC rakes on WR : 77

• Energy savings : 30%

•Savings (2011-12) : 53cr

Rlys to offer short-term contracts for advertisement on trains

With few takers for long-time advertisement deals on suburban trains, both Western and Central railways have decided to offer short-term advertisement contracts. The new Siemens rakes offer less space on its exterior compared to old rakes and the railways are facing a dip in advertisement revenue.

Both the railways have chosen to ignore the Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation (MRVC) objection to defacing the new Siemens rakes. The Western Railway, which is not plying any old rake in its suburban section after the completion of the DC-AC conversion, has decided to give its 10 Siemens rakes of its 78-rake fleet on advertisement contracts for vinyl wrapping on their exterior. The Central Railway, which has 44 Siemens rakes, has given a rake on a trial basis for advertisement. It also plans to give the rest of the rakes for advertisement on a first-come-first-serve basis.

“Similar to TV and newspaper advertisements, those on trains also target potential consumers to recall the product. Compared to other mediums, the span of exposure to the target audience is less as trains are in motion. Railway will have to change the rates, which are high at present, particularly in the sluggish market conditions,’’ a senior Central Railway official said.

“As far as the MRVC objection is concerned, we are here to increase the earnings of railway and we are going in that direction. The duty of the MRVC to provide us Siemens rakes, which they did and are doing. Now, we have to think what to do.’’

The Western Railway has earned Rs 9,65,656 lakh in short-term contracts for eight Siemen’s rakes between December 2011 and February 2012.

The licence fee for 2,910-sq ft area — the space available for advertisement — is Rs 1,0,7694 for a month, Rs 1, 93,849 for two months, Rs 2,69,233 for three months and Rs 3,44,618 for four months.

The CR official said: “Now, 69 old rakes have been given for exterior window panels for short term from February 9, 2012 to March 8, 2012 at Rs 8 lakh. One Siemens rake has also been given on a trial basis at Rs 458 a panel per month.”

Western Railway introduced innovative concept of Rail Café

To fulfill its commitment to provide the best catering facilities to its customers, Western Railway has introduced an innovative concept of ‘Rail Café’ with ready to take away facility of multi cuisine and branded food items on affordable rates for the benefit of rail users. 1st such café named ‘Bellasis Rail Café’ commissioned at Mumbai Central station was inaugurated by Shri Mahesh Kumar, General Manager, Western Railway on Friday, 9th December, 2011.

Western Railway, has commissioned this new café at Mumbai Central local station premises. This café is located on the 1st floor near Bellasis Road over Bridge connecting Mumbai Central station near the south end booking office. Looking to the footfalls of suburban commuters and paucity of time at this station, all items in this café will be available in proper food packets, with ready to take away facility. Shri Kumar appreciated the efforts of Railway administration to provide best possible amenities to passengers and emphasized to ensure to make them better in the future.

This Rail Café will be managed by Western Railway departmentally and has five counters. Besides various branded products, the Café will also sell meal “Janata Khana” as per Railway Board’s policy. It is worth mentioning that Mumbai Central station premises is also having other food courts like Jan Ahaar, McDonald and Desi Delli outlets. ‘Jan Ahaar’ had been recently opened by Western Railway and now one more food outlet is also opened for the benefit of rail users. Shri Deepak Gupta, Addl. GM and Shri G.S. Banerjee, Chief Commercial Manager along with other senior officers were also present on this occasion.,4,268

Published in: on December 18, 2011 at 11:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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New Innovation By Western Railway To Improve Catering Services

Western Railway has decided to introduce the scheme of ‘meal coupons’ for selling of standard meals and breakfast in the trains running with Pantry Cars.It has been decided to first start this scheme with Train No.12955/12956 Mumbai Central-Jaipur Superfast Express with effect from 1st December,2011.

The pre-printed meal coupons will be sold in advance by the Pantry Car staff to passengers who want to have standard breakfast, lunch, dinner etc. in this train. The passengers will make the payment and collect the coupons.These coupons will be exchanged by the passengers at the time of service of meals by the Pantry staff.

The meals tariffs and the menu items alongwith the quantity to be served have been printed on these coupons.It is expected that with the introduction of meal coupons, the cases of overcharging of meals will be eliminated.The passengers will also get all the menu items printed on the coupons.This will also cut out the practice of unauthorized hawking by outsiders.

Western Railway has also nominated one Senior Officer from Commercial Department who can be contacted on Mobile No. 9004490971 by the passengers travelling in this train in case of any complaint.

Recently Western Railway has taken over on-board catering service from Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation to provide quality services to its passenger at reasonable and affordable prices.

Western Railway is working towards providing better onboard experience for passengers and in recent past it has taken several steps such as better menu for catering in trains.,4,268&dcd=617&did=132273931622612BF956C840632725350EA405FFA049D.web103

Published in: on December 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm  Comments (1)  
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Western Railway cashes in on public address system

In a bid to enhance its advertising revenue, Western Railway (WR) has come out with an out-of-the-box idea. It now leases our air space on the public address (PA) system to advertisers, who wish to reach out to lakh of commuters waiting at platforms to board trains.

Promos of popular quiz show Kaun Banega Crorepati hosted by superstar Amitabh Bachchan were the first be aired via the PA system, recently. These promos, for which the advertising agency booked air time of 3,600 seconds spread across three consecutive days, earned handsome revenue for WR. Sharat Chandrayan, chief public relations officer (WR), said, “We were able to rake in Rs 4.5 lakh by leasing out air space for KBC promos. A few more promos from popular TV channels are also being played frequently on our PA system.”

WR will provide eight slots of three seconds each every hour to advertisers. These promos will be played for 10 hours during the day.

The advertisement rates are stiff when compared with those charged by FM channels. While FM operators seek anywhere between Rs 30 to 60 per second, WR commands a rate of Rs 125 per second.

On the railways, PA system are in place to make announcement about trains, awareness campaign and to relay important instructions to staff and commuters. This concept of WR, a first on Indian railways, is a win-win situation for both the advertisers and railways.

Chandrayan said, “As railways is the lifeline of the city, our PA system can reach out a wider and bigger

audience. Moreover, promos played on the PA system will certainly be heard by many, unlike on radio, where it is difficult to ascertain how many were tuned in when the advertisement was played.”

Though revenue is important, announcement related to railways will always be accorded priority over promotional advertisements. Care has been taken to ensure that the content aired is not defamatory or derogatory towards any gender of community, he added.

He said, “However, it is not possible to play advertisements frequently during peak hours as not many slots are available on the PA system because of a flurry of trains plying during this time.”

In the past too, the railways have come out with innovative ways to earn revenue from advertisements.

Till August, the railways earned Rs 13.02 crore from all advertisement sources. Chandrayan said, “We witnessed 15% growth in advertising revenue as compared to last year by leasing out space for hoardings, glowsigns, displays on ticket printouts, etc or playing of promos on TV screen placed at booking window and also through advertisement on walls built along the railway tracks.”

How tech changed face of rly indicators

Since the slate-and chalk era, indicators on platforms of Western Railway stations have gone through a series of evolution till it arrived at the hi-tech LCD age.

The new generation indicators, meant to show passengers the details of an arriving train, not only have a sleek look but are also big power-savers. Though they are not inexpensive—a single-line indicator costs Rs 1.35 lakh and a multi-line one Rs 2 lakh—officials feel that the change will be better, as the new technology provides flexibility in displaying information and the texts can be read from afar.

Chief PRO of WR Sharat Chandrayan said, “We have installed LCD-based multiline indicators at Bandra and Dadar. They are on trial run and once it prove to be successful, we will take them to other stations.”

With evolving technology, indicators have also kept pace over the time. Chandrayan said, “At the beginning, when there were only a few trains, the railways made use of chalk-and-board to inform commuters about the arrival and departure times.”

As the network expanded and number of services went up, the authorities brought in “painted boards”. “They were operated manually and a person was deployed to change the wooden panels that showed the destinations and timings,” Chandrayan said. “This cumbersome process and was dependent on the availability of manpower.”

The painted boards stayed till 1986, when it made way to ‘bulb’ indicators. “A signboard with bulbs where introduced in 1986. Texts written in small electric bulbs showed the destinations and the stations where they will not stop. It worked on the mechanism of manualswitch operation.” A few years later,computer made its advent and the previous system was upgraded to Micro Processorbased technology. “The new boards also showed whether a train was fast or slow. They were linked to the Train Management System,” he said.

In 2003, these indicators were replaced with their LED counterparts. Initially, there was one main indicator (multi-line double face) showing all the information of a train like its destination, mode and the stations it will not halt at. Besides, there were pilot indicators showing destination code, time, mode and the time within which the train was expected. Unlike the new LCD boards, the LEDs have poor resolution and the texts are a bit blurred though visibility is much better than earlier systems. Chandrayan said, “LCD boards provide better flexibility in displaying information and the visibility is clearer owing to the brightness and contrast.”

Keeping Pace With Time

SLATE-&-CHALK | In the initial days of railways, a slate used to be put up at a station and officials would write train timings on it with a chalk
PAINTED BOARD | The wooden indicators resembled the old score boards in a cricket stadium. From time to time, an employee would manually change the painted panels of digits and alphabets, showing the train timings and destinations
BULB INDICATORS | Introduced in 1986, the indicators worked on manual switch operation technology. They showed destinations and the stations a train would not halt at
MICRO-PROCESSOR | The computer-enabled system was connected with the Train Management System. The new indicators provided commuters with basic details, besides the time within which a train would arrive and whether it was a slow or a fast local
LED INDICATORS | LED-based indicators are superior in quality and provid good visibility LCD INDICATORS | These stateof-the art indicators have high resolution and better picture quality that ensure clearer visibility

Published in: on August 18, 2011 at 4:38 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Sumptuous meals on trains

Commuters can expect to have a sumptuous meal while travelling by some of the important trains as the Western Railway has drawn up plans to serve a range of mouth-watering dishes.

A few weeks ago, WR took over the management of kitchens from the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation after the ministry received complaints about the quality of food. The meals are being provided by the WR in Rajdhani Express, August Kranti Express, Rajdhani Spl Express and Shatabdi Express.

Sharat Chandrayan, chief public relations officer, WR, said, “Our aim is to increase the variety as well as nutritional value of the food being served on these trains.” Both vegetarian and non-vegetarian fare is served on these trains.