Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Monday said safety was the first priority of the national transporter and that passengers were well aware why trains were getting delayed.
The report added that currently several long-route trains are running up to 20 hours late, causing massive inconvenience to the millions of people travelling on the world’s busiest public transportation network daily. The premier Champaran Humsafar train, launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to celebrate 100 years of Mahatma Gandhi’s Champaran Satyagraha in April 2018, on average runs 12 hours behind schedule.
- 118 Train Accidents in year 2013-14 and 73 in 2017-18.
- 10 per cent drop in punctuality rate of trains.
- Punctuality rate in 2015-16 was 92.32%.
At a press conference, Vishwesh Chaube, General Manager (GM), NR, said as of June 8, 2017, the punctuality rate in the zone was 63 per cent, adding that on June 8, 2018, it had declined to 53 per cent.
Until a few months ago, the Railways reported punctuality of 80% and above, which railway ministry officials claimed has also been the average score for the last one decade or so.
Today the Indian railways is focusing on passenger safety & is putting its best foot forward to see how we can upgrade infrastructure to improvise & address the areas which affect the consumer directly: Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal on 4 years of Modi Govt pic.twitter.com/Cd3fFPoC8Y
— ANI (@ANI) June 11, 2018
As of March 2018, there were 21 critical divisions across the country’s railway network boasting a punctuality rate of less than 80 per cent. Among them, the worst performing divisions were Allahabad division with a score of around 48 per cent during the fiscal and Mumbai Central (60.9 per cent). Just last week, Vishwesh Chaube, General Manager of the Northern Railways, admitted that the punctuality rate in the zone had declined to 53 per cent in June 2018 from 63 per cent a year ago.
“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 work going on, there is only a 10 per cent drop in the punctuality rate,” said Vishwesh chaube.
Earlier this month, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal warned heads of zonal railways that delays in train services will defer their appraisal proportionately, giving them time till the end of this month to improve punctuality.