December 29, 2016 8:21:32 pm
Cracking the whip, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on Thursday asked the zonal heads and Board Members to “act or relinquish the responsibility” after two train derailments in two consecutive days and knocked at the doors of Japan and Korea for technical solutions to put an end to such mishaps. It was also decided during the marathon day-long meeting with all top railway management that all Mail/Express trains would have at least one officer travelling during night hours on locomotives for comprehensive inspection over next 10 days and report back “deficiencies” on safety mechanism.
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The deployment of an officer in all express and mail trains will be in addition to the existing schedule and inspection at various levels.
Expressing serious concern over the increase in number of derailments in the recent past, Prabhu had a series of meetings with General Managers, Board members, safety experts and railway PSUs today and sought short-term and medium-term action plan to prevent derailments.
Prabhu reportedly told General Managers of various zones through video-conferencing in the presence of Railway Board Members that “if they are not been able to manage they should relinquish the post and be replaced forthwith.”
At least 62 passengers were injured when 15 coaches of the Sealdah-Ajmer Express derailed while it was crossing a bridge near Rura Railway Station in Kanpur Rural district yesterday.
Five coaches of the Kurla-Ambernath local train derailed this morning between Kalyan and Vitthalwadi stations in Thane district.
According to a senior Railway Ministry official “Minister has requested experts from Japan and Korean to visit India and to recommend suitable technological solutions to prevent derailments.”
Japan and Korea has good safety records in railway system as compared to other countries and Indian Railways already had agreements with these countries for cooperation on safety.
An agreement was signed between the Railway Technological Research Institute of Japan and RDSO and also with Korean Rail Research Institute for cooperation in the field of railway safety.
Expert teams from Japan and Korea are expected to arrive soon, he said.
Pulling up the safety directorate, Prabhu instructed that all railway installations to be inspected over the next one week to identify and rectify the shortcomings.
The report of this exercise with actionable points should be sent to the Railway Board within the prescribed time, the official said
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