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Railways breaks ‘record’ on punctuality

| | New Delhi
Railways breaks ‘record’ on punctuality

The Indian Railways punctuality has taken a further dip with the summer rush peaking up by the day. The latest average punctuality level has come down from 80 per cent daily to 65 per cent now, which is the worst average in several years.

When asked about the inordinate delay of trains, a senior railway official said safety was the first priority of the national transporter. He pointed out that in 2017-18, the Railways clocked best ever safety record in years. He said train accidents count came down to 62 per cent from 118 per cent in 2013-14. It is 73 per cent in 2017-18.

Early this month, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had warned the heads of the Zonal Railways that  delay in train services would defer their appraisal proportionately and gave them a month (till June 30) to improve on the punctuality of trains.

“Maintenance of the tracks, which was due for decades, is causing train delays. The passengers are well aware why the trains are getting delayed and they know that the Indian Railways is getting future-ready. Everyone knows what we have received in inheritance,” said a senior Railway official.

The Railway Minister, Chairman Railway Board Ashwani Lohani and Railway Board Member Md Jamshed on Monday lashed out at the previous UPA regime for ignoring the rail infrastructure development over the years. “Blame it on past Governments for keeping things in dormant position,” the trio said at a Press conference convened to highlight achievements of the Railway Ministry in the last four years under the Modi regime.

Northern Railways on its part clarified that despite large-scale works underway in the zone, there was only a 10 per cent drop in punctuality as compared to last year.

“The punctuality of trains is now being recorded through data-loggers whereas earlier it was done manually.

Now, even if a train is late by a minute, it is counted as a train arriving late. This has made a difference in the punctuality figures of this year. Also, despite a lot of works going on, there is only a 10 per cent drop in the punctuality rate,” said NR General Manager Vishwesh Chaube.

Chaube had to face Goyal’s wrath with the NR zone recording an abysmal 49.59 per cent punctuality  performance till May 29, a 32.74 per cent dip compared to the same period last year.



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