Trip on a Train – Difficulties and Opinion

train

Originally posted in Weaversword.com

Boarded on Doon Express on 17/05/2017 night at Haridwar on the S7 coach on a Tatkal Ticket. The train starts from Dehradun to Howrah. My ticket was upto Varanasi. The reserved coach was full with also unreserved passengers sitting on reserved seats/berth. Can find RAC passenger also full with no seats/berths to offer. Train Started and I noticed the TTE checking. At first, I thought at least there is a TTE on this route. Then he started to drive of cleaning the coach of unreserved passengers. He nearly sent the poor and uneducated passengers. I was happy to see that, which was short lived. I saw he did not drive away the people who were well dressed and seem educated among the unreserved passenger. This Shows why India will not improve.

Then he started allotting seats/berths of vacant quota to the unreserved passengers. I was watching all this sitting on the Side upper berth. Firstly, I thought that he is allotting to the RAC ticket holders, but in vain it was not so. I don’t know if he had compromised for exchange. Again, this shows how our Indian Railway Employees are.

When I woke up in the mid of the night. I found still people sitting blocking the doorway, blocking the wash and restrooms. I pity India and its people. Aware I too am an Indian. I know there are people who do not share my thought, still, I want myself felt. I remain a mute spectator for all that’s happening.

Next day morning, I could see more people of the unreserved ticket passengers sitting on the berths. Where people are sleeping. One person who made it to the upper berth and sat there giving hindrance to the sleeping passenger.

People who reserved the tickets say three months in advance or even people who pay an extra premium on tatkal are also harassed by the unreserved ticket holders. Which brought at half the rate of reserved tickets and that too only at the time of boarding, take full advantages of reserved passengers should be entitled. If asked to move away they start a fight, which the reserved passengers are not interested.

Moments train reached Lucknow, where there is a fresh flow of marching unreserved ticket holders. On seeing, a squad of checking inspector. I thought the problem would end at least now. They started asking for a few passengers to produce the ticket. In front of my eyes, they left the people standing or blocking the doorway and came to people sitting on the seats/berths asking them to produce the ticket. There were already a lot of people sitting in the first bay (here bay comprises of 6+2 side seat/berth) ignoring them came directly to the second bay.

I don’t understand the logic behind that what they were up to. There was one college going girl, a family of 3, and a child sitting with mother sitting on the berths. The family had an ordinary ticket of two adults leaving the child. The checking inspector was a lady who demanded a fine and difference of fare which works out to Rs. 320 for each person on the ticket. The male person started arguing for a ticket of Rs. 70 why should he pay Rs. 320. In addition, he was not ready to accept the lady inspector’s version. In the meantime, the young girl and the mother with the child also producing ordinary tickets refused to pay any fine or charges.

The checking inspector was very intelligent of extracting 1 person fine and rate difference from the family who had 2 persons on their ticket. But paid only Rs. 320. The young girl refusing to pay anything offered a bribe of Rs. 100 which was gracefully refused by the inspector. The inspector was, in turn, justifying and finding faults of the higher ups as they are forced to reach a target of 1.00 lakh in a month in any manner. This is the Indian Railways. She left people sitting in the next few bays and went near the other end of the compartment and was demanding for the tickets to be produced.

train

Lessons to be Learnt

  1. Do not Buy Reserved Tickets: As this is only equivalent to the ordinary tickets brought at the time of boarding. By blocking tickets three months in advance. We give the railways advance money free from any interest. When they the department or its employees are not in a position to do or give justice to the people who book the tickets in advance or a premium paid by way of a tatkal ticket.
  2. The apathy of tatkal ticket: To book a tatkal ticket there are people who come and wait overnight at the reservation centers because only the first 5 people will be able to get a confirmed and others if luck permits they may get.
  3. TTE in the trains: It is noted that there is no need of a checker as they are found in some trains and not found in some. Even if they are there they go and relax in the AC coaches, instead of checking and giving basics of what is offered by the department at the time of booking.
  4. Checking Squad: They are very good people who know from whom that they can extract the fines as they will not charge all the ordinary ticket holders but only selected special scrape goats.
  5. Security on Trains by RPF: There is no role found of these people in the train. They only do a role of a Gurkha who just roams around the train not bothers about the security of the passengers.

My Opinion

  1. There should not be just a minister for Railways. But should be one for every zonal division, who has to take responsibilities of all these failures.
  2. No advance reservation of ticket as confirmed tickets is given at the time of boarding as this will lead to a reduction of additional staff. Who just enjoy the services as a government employee and do nothing as justice to their profession.
  3. All trains to be made on an ordinary ticket as there are no facilities provided by the department promised. One such example is the cleaning person come once in the morning with a bottled perfumed spray in hand. Spray’s it and ask the passenger to give an opinion and goes to a person who does not know anything and just gets the book signed balanced would be filled up by them. Certifying that they have done what required. But still, the toilets remain dirty and shitty. The floor of the coach is always shabby, no water provided in the coaches.
  4. Increasing in the number of trains that too with good infra and shunting of all the so called used coaches who have lived their lives. Increase in frequency and speedy and no night travel trains as there are no benefits given to the passenger. Who travel as fans do not function, lights are usually out of service, the shocks and the screeching sounds done by the trains in their runs.
  5. There is no necessary of Food serving boards as when the prices fixed by the board of the department are never kept. An example let us take tea served which price fixed Rs.7 but you get the same on the train for Rs.10 only. There is no compromise for the Rs. 3 factor where we can say they give more for the difference. On the contrary, they reduce the quantity. As per the quality, you can say hot water with no or glimpse of milk seen and flavors of tea. Say lunch it is fixed at Rs. 60 which is also served not less than Rs. 100 and not to talk about quality.
  6. And last but not the least all the coaches of the only general compartment as we cannot question the scheduled time of running of trains. The trains can come and go even indefinite late as there is no control on running time maintained.

Difficulties are the lessons to be learned and opinions of my views are, or would not be taken up. These posts or messages are always treated as junks generally.

There are a very good Prime Minister and Railway Minister here who want to do good for the common public. The same common public is also the ones who work in these departments who do not want to work or do not keep up the promises for the vision seeking Prime and Railway ministers. I pity me first as I am unable to express myself freely or on common Indian Public who do not want to do any good, but only find faults at others. These Views and Opinions are to the best of my knowledge shared. Thanks for a patient reading.

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