Welfare of passengers, employees a top priority: Railway chief

Welfare of passengers, employees a top priority: Railway chief
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First Published: Mon, Sep 03 2007. 10 41 AM IST
Updated: Mon, Sep 03 2007. 10 41 AM IST
New Delhi: An effective mechanism to address rail users’ grievances, a strategy to meet increased freight traffic, speeding of work in port connectivity and dedicated freight corridor and initiating new welfare measures for railway employees are some of the priorities of the new Chairman of the Railway Board.
“We already have a system to address the grievances of the common man. What we need now is to evolve a more effective mechanism to address the issue,” K.C. Jena, Chairman Railway Board told PTI.
“The interest of the common man is supreme to us as he is the vital stake holder of the railway. His complaints or grievances need to be attended urgently.
“We have to work out a strategy in which the grievance redressal system functions in a fast pace and result is delivered without much delay. So, my priority will be to try and meet the needs and aspirations of common rail users,” he said.
Railways have undertaken several steps to improve the passenger amenities by providing better facilities in trains and at stations. “The system of passenger interface has to be strengthened and a new modalities have to be worked out to link with the common rail users more directly,” Jena said.
Jena said the Indian Railways has set a target of 785 MT freight traffic this year which is a quite a tough task. “This can be done by formulating a result-oriented marketing strategy. We have announced a number of freight incentives to attract freight business. We are going to announce some fresh freight incentive schemes soon to attract more traffic,” he said.
“But simultaneously we have to work out to expand our infrastructure and line capacity to meet the increased demand. Otherwise we will not be able to meet the challenge,” he said.
Jena said, Railways will generate additional earnings of additional earnings of Rs177.35 crore during the current year from the freight incentive scheme for incremental traffic. The ministry has instructed all zonal railways to make all these more popular to get more and more traffic from road to rail.
About the Dedicated Freight Corridors (DFC) he said, it has to be taken forward as it is vital for railway’s growth. “Port connectivity and DFC are to receive my focus of attention because future growth of railway is directly linked to it.”
Railways expect to carry more than 1100 MT of revenue earning freight traffic by the end of the 11th Five-year Plan. Development of DFC for carrying additional traffic is essential in view of high growth in demand. The high density network connecting four metro cities of Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai has got saturated at most locations.
Separate freight corridor would not only increase the speed of goods trains but also contribute towards increasing the share of railways and create capacity to meet expected demand, said Jena.
Railways have a large work force of 1.4 million. “We are finalising some new welfare measures for our employees,” he said.
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First Published: Mon, Sep 03 2007. 10 41 AM IST