● Priority to improve passenger facilities & amenities at Smaller Stations.
● Infrastructure Developmental Works being monitored at the Highest Level.
● Puri & Bhubaneswar Station will have World Class facilities. Tender floated, contract award to be done, soon.
Indian Railways, the Life Line of the Country, is committed towards the all round development of the Nation. Indian Railways is also the harbinger of growth of Indian economy. Railways is not only developing the infrastructure over its territory but also improving the travel experience of passengers.
Development of Railway infrastructure in the Eastern Coast of the Country, especially in Odisha, Railways is being given priority. Hon’ble Railway Minister Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw Ji is also committed to fulfil the aspirations of the people of Odisha.
Running of 205 Special Trains for Rath Yatra Festival:
During the visit of Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon’ble Minister of Railways to Puri & Konark on 21st June, had declared to run 205 Special Trains to and from Puri during the Rath Yatra (Car Festival) period for the convenience of pilgrims. As, Rath Yatra was organized without pilgrims since last two years due to Covid-19 protocols, Railways have expected much more pilgrims will be gathered at Puri, this year. These apart, necessary steps have been taken to facilitate pilgrims with reserved Class Accommodation, for the trains leaving from its jurisdiction towards Puri and vice-versa, apart from the Special trains from neighbouring States.
Special Arrangements during Rath Yatra for Pilgrim’s Convenience:
Apart from the running of Special Trains, Shri Vaishnaw had directed officials to provide ever best service to the pilgrims and passengers during Rath Yatra Time. Keeping in view of the above, many facilities have been provided by East Coast Railway. These include Security arrangements, health and First Aid facilities, Additional Ticket Counters and accommodation of pilgrims along with other facilities.
For the security of passengers, more than 100 CCTV cameras have been installed in the station area. In addition to this drone cameras are being used for better monitoring of security arrangements. Railways have deployed more than 600 RPF personnel and 200 Rail Volunteers to provide safety & guidance to the pilgrims.
More than 40 Ticket Booking Counters, 10 UTS based Hand-Held Counters and many Mobile Counters have been installed for the rail passengers. For the very first time, arrangements have been made to sell Railway Tickets on Road Vehicles.
As per the directions of Hon’ble Minister Shri Vaishnaw, huge covered space has been arranged by the Railways to accommodate 15,000 devotees with Food Court, Drinking Water taps and Toilet facilities. Provisions have been made for Battery Operated Cars for Senior Citizens and disabled people. Free Food has also been arranged for about 50,000 needy pilgrims.
Resumption of Trains, which were cancelled since lockdown:
On passenger’s and general public demand for restoration of trains which were cancelled since Covid19 Lockdown/Shutdown; Hon’ble Railway Minister directed to restore the services of Puri-Sai Nagar Shirdi-Puri Express, Puri-Paradeep-Puri Express, Cuttack-Bhadrak-Cuttack MEMU Special, Visakhapatnam-Koraput-Visakhapatnam Intercity, Visakhapatnam-Brahmapur-Visakhapatnam Express, Palasa-Cuttack-Palasa Passenger Special and Puri-Talcher-Puri MEMU Special.
Rajdhani like Coaches for Safer and comfortable journey:
To provide better comfort and jerk free journey to the passengers, Shri Vaishnaw had announced the introduction of more Rajdhani type LHB coaches in the trains of this region. These fire retardant, low maintenance, higher passenger carrying capacity, safer & comfortable coaches have now been introduced in the Bhubaneswar-New Delhi Duronto Express, Puri-Hatia Tapaswini Express, Visakhapatnam-Kirandul Express, Bhubaneswar-Bengaluru Prashanti Express and Bhubaneswar-Anand Vihar (Delhi) Super Fast Express within a very short period.
Monitoring of ongoing projects at the highest level:
The major and public centric Railway projects in Odisha are being monitored at the highest level under the supervision of Prime Minister’s Office. Shri Vaishnaw has also instructed railway officials to keep regular touch with the State Government officials for early land acquisition, land clearance of different departments; so that the ongoing projects will be completed at the earliest.
As a result, the construction of Khurda Road-Balangir New Line is going on in full swing. Completion of other projects including doubling and tripling of line has also been given priority.
World Class Facilities at Bhubaneswar & Puri Stations:
Shri Vaishnaw had assured to provide World Class Facilities and getups at Bhubaneswar and Puri Railway Stations. Now, the tender has been floated for both the projects and opened for Puri project in last week of June and will be awarded very soon.