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News Entry# 74239  

Today (5:17AM)  High drama at Thanjavur railway station (www.thehindu.com)
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PoliticsSR/Southern  -  

News Entry# 202179     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
Protesters pull emergency chain of a train
A drama was enacted at the Thanjavur Railway junction when MDMK general secretary Vaiko led a group of cadres owing allegiance to various political affiliations staged a rail roko in support of farmers’ protest against Karnataka constructing reservoirs across the Cauvery.A strong police posse prevented Mr. Vaiko and surging protesters from entering the junction premises by erecting barricades. The protesters’ plan was to picket the Tiruchi-Chennai Egmore Cholan Express but police thwarted them and the train quietly left the junction unhindered.While the push and pull play was being enacted outside the junction, around 20 cadres belonging to the People’s Art and Literature Association (PALA), masquerading as passengers, pulled the emergency chain of the Nagore-Thanjavur-Tiruchi Passenger as it began to leave, catching the police and railway authorities off guard.
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The activists addressed the fellow passengers of their intention to detain the train, jumped out and climbed the locomotive engine raising slogans denouncing Karnataka and the Centre. The train was detained for about 30 minutes.
By then, Mr. Vaiko and other protesters broke through the police cordon, entered the junction premises and found that there was no train to force a halt. Standing on the track, Mr. Vaiko hit out at the Karnataka government, terming it sectarian. He also criticised the Centre for “ignoring” Karnataka’s excesses. If rivers were not nationalised, then the present inter State rivers might become international rivers, he said.
Earlier, Naam Tamizhar Katchi leaders eulogised slain LTTE supremo V. Prabhakaran and promised a separate Tamil Eelam.

Today (5:17AM)  State BJP meet with Union Railway Minister (e-pao.net)
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Commentary/Human InterestNFR/Northeast Frontier  -  

News Entry# 202178     
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State BJP meet with Union Railway Minister

Today (5:15AM)  Cops want to take up security of Delhi Metro stations (timesofindia.indiatimes.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestDMRC/Delhi Metro  -  

News Entry# 202177     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
NEW DELHI : Delhi Police wants to take over security of Delhi Metro stations from CISF.
A proposal in this regard (accessed by TOI) has been drafted and is being discussed by officials of joint commissioner level and above. At present, the police top brass, CISF and DMRC are divided on the issue.
While it's unlikely that Delhi Police will get a chance to man the Metro, officials are of the view that the proposal should be forwarded to the ministries concerned—MHA, transport—and a meeting may be held with DMRC in coming weeks, a DIG-rank officer said, requesting anonymity.
However, Delhi Police and CISF agree informally that the presence of both is only adding to confusion and paving the way
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for a blame game in case of any untoward incident such as the attack on African students at Rajiv Chowk station. The move, officers say, will also establish culpability in such mishaps.
Rising crime on the premises of Metro stations are another reason why Delhi Police wants to take over their security, sources said. Robberies, thefts and even a rape have been committed on the premises. According to the proposal, presence of two agencies lowers efficiency in day-to-day operations and will have adverse repercussion during contingencies which require integrated and augmented action.
"If overall security of Delhi Metro is entrusted to Delhi Police, there will be better coordination with outside agencies like disaster management, fire department, traffic police and hospitals as police already deal with them regularly. Delhi Police has a vast network of PCRs and mobile police vans. We have communication networks like C4i which will lower cost to the government exchequer," the proposal reads.
The proposal mentions that Delhi Metro is threat-prone and perpetually on the terrorist radar. "Delhi Police has dedicated units like special branch, SWAT, anti-sabotage gadgetry and special cell which regularly provide inputs on terrorists and anti-social elements. Profiling of commuters can also be done better," it said.
Then there are some less impressive arguments such as one which says that the presence of Delhi Police at access points will dissuade criminals from committing crimes and ensure a check on "activities of inter-state ramifications".
"In all formal and informal discussions held with field officers ranging from lower subordinate personnel to district police heads and Delhi Metro unit officers, there has been overwhelming feedback in favour of the security of Metro stations being handed over to Delhi Police," a source said.

Today (5:14AM)  Mahadik stresses on need for foot overbridge at Kolhapur railway station (timesofindia.indiatimes.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestCR/Central  -  

News Entry# 202176     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
KOLHAPUR: Member of Parliaent Dhananjay Mahadik has called for construction of a foot overbridge (FOB) connecting the Kolhapur railway station with Shahupuri and Rajarampuri areas, a project that has been pending for a long time.
Mahadik, who visited the railway station on Saturday along with two officials from the Central Railway's Pune division, also enquired about emergency health check-up facilities for commuters and restroom facilities for waiting passengers.
The Central Railway officials said that three developmental projects at the station have already been cleared.
Ashok Kumar Tiwari, senior divisional operations manager, said, "The construction of an overhead cover on Platform 3 has been sanctioned already. It will cost up to Rs 1.97 crore and a tender for the work has
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been issued as well. We expect the work to start soon. The cover is necessary because passengers face inconvenience during monsoon and summer. The demand for another foot overbridge connecting the platform with Rajarampuri and Shahupuri areas has been pending for some time and we have now opened the tenders for it. We are planning to complete it on a priority basis, because passengers have demanded it several times."
He also talked about the issue of increasing the platform height to match the floor level of the train coach. Tiwari said, "The platform is almost one foot lower than the floor level of the coach. We have received complaints saying that senior citizens, sick persons and children face serious problems while boarding or alighting a train. The platform height has been increased in most of the key stations in the country as the gap can lead to accidents. The terminus building is quite old and we need several clearances before we can increase the platform height."
Mahadik said that he visited the station as he will be going to New Delhi to attend the winter session in the parliament in coming days and can take up commuters' issues with new Union railway minister Suresh Prabhu. He added that as Prabhu is from Maharashtra, he is aware of some problems related to the Kolhapur terminus, which could benefit the station.
Apart from Mahadik and Tiwari, Rajarshi Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj Terminus station manager Sugreev Meena, Central Railway senior divisional commercial manager Gaurav Jha, Kolhapur Railway Passengers' Association president Shivnath Biyani and railway expert Mohan Shete were also present for the meeting.
Mahadik said, "I am aware of the growing rush to Kolhapur. An efficient train service to the city will also contribute to the economic growth the district and offer more business to the station. I have noted down the various issues pertaining to Kolhapur and I will take them up with the ministry."
Biyani said, "A dedicated medical facility is necessary at the station. At present, the medical officer has to come from Miraj. The allocated facility at the terminus is not clean and there is no staff deployed to cater to passengers in case of an emergency."

Today (5:13AM)  Railway Minister calls for ramping up RE generation (www.energynext.in)
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Commentary/Human Interest

News Entry# 202175     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
To increase its green energy footprint, Indian Railways (IR) is all set to set up its largest wind power project till date. Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, the Minister of Railways, formally launched the process of setting up the 26 MW wind farm in Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan.
The wind farm is being developed for captive use by the Indian Railways. This is the biggest renewable energy initiative by the IR which will be built by Railway Renewable Energy Management Company Limited (REMCL)- a joint venture of Ministry of Railways and, it’s PSU, RITES Limited.
The contract for the project has been awarded to INOX Wind Limited by REMCL. The letter fo award was signed between REMCL and INOX in presence of Suresh Prabhu; Minister of State for Railways, Manoj Sinha and other dignitaries
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from IR and state government of Rajasthan.
Speaking at the occasion, Prabhu said that harnessing renewable energy was essential to address the challenge of environmental sustainability. He stated that since Indian Railways was a mammoth organisation, and even if it uses a small percentage of power from RE sources, it would have a substantial impact. He, therefore, stressed the need for increasing the renewable sources of energy in the energy basket, and curb dependence on fossil fuels. He lauded REMCL for its efforts in the renewable energy development.
Prabhu also stressed the need for harnessing solar energy and said the stations should be designed in such a way that solar panels could be installed for captive power generation. He also underlined the need for undertaking a comprehensive and structured energy audit to ensure the best and optimal utilisation of energy. He suggested that IR can seek help from Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) for energy efficiency measures.
Manoj Sinha said that Railways need to increase its efforts in setting up solar and wind energy projects in order to fulfill Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi’s plans of harnessing 1,00,000 MW of green energy.
Arunendra Kumar, Chairman-Railway Board, stated that Indian Railways is taking up renewable energy projects in a big way. He informed that a solar power plant is being built at the Katra Railway Station on advice of the Prime Minister.
AK Mittal, Member-Electrical, said that the Indian railways installed its first wind power project of 10.5 MW capacity in Tamil Nadu in 2009. The works for setting up 157.5 MW windmill plants has been transferred to REMC for execution.
The wind project in Rajasthan is estimated to cost around Rs 150 crore and will be operational in nine months’ time. The power generated from the wind farm will be purchased by Railways at CERC determined rates. Rajeev Mehrotra, Chairman-REMCL, said that REMCL will be launching other such projects including power trading in the near future soon.

Today (5:12AM)  More cops to provide safe harbour on Central Railway (www.hindustantimes.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestML/Mumbai Local  -  

News Entry# 202174     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
After Hindustan Times, in its November 15 edition, highlighted the lack of police personnel on Central Railway’s harbour line – the Chunabhatti-Sandhurst Road stretch in particular – the Government Railway Police (GRP) has deployed more personnel to man these stations.
In addition, a “harbour striking force” will also be constantly patrolling all platforms on this route. Officials said the deployment was made after 140 new recruits joined the force following training.
“We have given priority to the harbour line and have provided as many personnel as possible. All officers, including deputy commissioners, assistant commissioners and myself, met and discussed this issue,” said GRP commissioner Dr Ravinder Singal.
During a survey of the harbour line last week, HT found no policemen deployed at platforms
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on the stretch between Chunabhatti and Sandhurst Road throughout the day.
Since then, around 14 policemen have been allotted to two police stations – Wadala and Vashi GRP – under whose jurisdiction this stretch falls.
All other railway police stations along with the railway crime branch have been allotted around six personnel each. In all, there are 17 police stations in the Mumbai division of the GRP.
To provide backup to these personnel, a harbour striking force – which until now was only stationed at Wadala – will patrol all the stations on the harbour line.
“The harbour striking force is a contingency team that is rushed to a railway station in case of emergency. Till date, it used to be stationed at Wadala and moved when needed. Now, they will constantly patrol all the stations,” said Rupali Ambure, deputy commissioner of police, GRP (CR).
GRP officers also stated that at times, policemen posted at platforms do not report for duty. While police sub-inspectors do visit stations to supervise their presence, the system is not fool-proof.
“This is another issue that GRP faces. In case a policeman is found to be a habitually missing his station duty, we initiate departmental action against him as per the rules,” Singal added.

Today (5:11AM)  Railway minister gives CR, WR ten days to ensure trains run on time (www.hindustantimes.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestML/Mumbai Local  -  

News Entry# 202173     
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On his first visit to Mumbai since taking over as Union railway minister earlier this month, Suresh Prabhu on Friday set a 10-day deadline for Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR) authorities to ensure that suburban services run on time.
While reviewing their functioning, Prabhu asked CR and WR officials to chart out all the maintenance work that needs to be done and to complete it within a fixed timeframe.
He also asked them to submit a list of emergency works that need to be prioritised for smooth functioning of suburban trains.
Prabhu asked for a time-bound plan to be chalked out for the issues to be sorted out, including addressing the concerns of commuters.
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Over 70 lakh commuters travel on WR and CR’s suburban lines daily and even minor disruptions on these lines adversely affect them.
Of late, CR has a witnessed series of disruptions on the suburban section, which include derailments, rail fractures, unit failures and so on. Member of Parliament Kirit Somaiya had recently visited Delhi to discuss the recurring problems on the Mumbai suburban section.
Majority of recent failures on CR have occurred in the Thane-Kalyan section. The administration has identified this as the most critical section in its emergency work list, which will be sent to the railway minister on Monday.
The CR administration has requested for additional funds of Rs. 250 crore to undertake the maintenance work, which they claim is pending since last five years.
“Rs 250 crore is requested to clear the maintenance backlog of last five years and also more track repairing machines which will bring down the human intervention,” said Sunilkumar Sood, general manager, CR.
Meanwhile, Western Railway general manager Hemant Kumar said, “We have requested additional funds for platform raising, Borivli yard remodelling and sanctions for a sixth line for trains going from Borivali to Mumbai Central.”
On Friday, Prabhu also visited the railway colony at Carter Road in Bandra, where he met local legislator Ashish Shelar and MP Poonam Mahajan and discussed commuter issues with them.

Today (5:09AM)  Prabhu meets CR & WR top brass, assures them of Centre’s support (indianexpress.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestML/Mumbai Local  -  

News Entry# 202172     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on Friday asked the general managers of Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR) to improve punctuality of trains and assured the two zonal railway heads of his support from the Railway Board. The directives were following repeated disruptions, including derailments, witnessed on CR in the past few months.
The new railway minister directed the suburban railway authorities to make a time-bound plan to address concerns of commuters and expedite the traction conversion work of Direct Current (DC) to Alternating Current (AC) between Thane and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus on Central Railway (CR).
The traction conversion work is expected to be completed by the end of this year. The work is being undertaken to increase the speed of the trains, save time in changing engines of long distance trains
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and save energy.
Prabhu also discussed the repeated disruptions on CR owing to lack of maintenance and outdated equipment, and directed General Manager S K Sood to finish Kalyan yard remodelling at a war-footing, setting a November 30 deadline to restore maximum train speed in the section. Several derailments reported at Kalyan have led to a speed restriction in the section that has been primarily responsible for delays in services.
With many technical problems at Kalyan yard, which caters to 900 trains daily, CR recently contracted 200 labourers and deputed 100 departmental track maintainers.
“Since November 1, strengthening of assets has been given special attention between Thane-Kalyan section and at Kalyan yard. All the Sunday mega blocks have been availed in this section only. Additionally, short duration blocks on Saturdays and special night blocks have been granted for track renewal work,” said a CR spokesperson.
About 300 Permanent Way staff were diverted from other divisions of CR for about a fortnight to attend arrears of track maintenance.
Apart for addressing issues of CR, the minister also met the general manager of WR. “The minister reviewed the suburban system and asked us to complete various works in a time-bound manner. Among some of the works, he discussed the work related to raising platform height,” said Hemant Kumar, General Manager, WR, adding that WR had requested for Rs 5 crore for the first phase of the project. The total project costing Rs 38crore is being undertaken in three phases.
Railway officials said Prabhu and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis were apprised about the pending work on the road-over-bridge near Jogeshwari station on WR that had stalled the completion of Oshiwara station for over a year now.
Prabhu also met Konkan railway authorities and promised to give Rs 250 crore to the zonal railways for various works on its route. All the authorities have been asked to submit a plan at the earliest.
CR aims to erect retaining wall at Sandhurst before next monsoon
After repeated disruptions during monsoons this year and many reminders by local activists about the precarious boundary wall along railway tracks near Sandhurst Road station, the Central Railway (CR) has finally decided to construct a 75-m retaining wall along the slow line towards Thane.
With two wall collapses threatening safety of railway passengers during monsoon this year, the administration has decided to have a long-term solution for its railway tracks that are too close to the boundary walls at Sandhurst Road station.
The CR has called for tenders to construct the wall along the down slow line for Rs 93.93 lakh. The administration has a target to complete the wall before the next monsoons to avoid any further incident along the tracks.
According to a railway officer, there were about 19 rooms still that had to be vacated by the civic body before work on the retaining wall could be started.“Most of the work will be done at night as services cannot be halted on the line for long. It will be difficult and dangerous for workers to construct the retaining wall if services continue as there is hardly any space along the tracks to stand,” said a senior railway officer.After the collapses, the CR had constructed Gabian structures and put wire mesh to prevent a landslide along tracks during rains as an interim measure.The railway tracks running slow services towards Thane, along Sandhurst Road station are very close to the boundary wall. Apart from dilapidated structures next to the boundary wall, there were illegal encroachments on the wall itself, which were cited as a threat to safety of trains. In July, two wall collapses were reported, disrupting services on the line. In August 2010, a similar wall collapse was reported, following which the CR had constructed a retaining wall in the portion that collapsed.

Today (5:08AM)  Fire breaks out in special train of police officers near Siliguri (zeenews.india.com)
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Major Accidents/DisruptionsNFR/Northeast Frontier  -  

News Entry# 202171     
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Posted by: rdb**  89537 news posts  
Siliguri: A fire broke out in a special train, which was carrying police officers deployed on election duty in Jammu and Kashmir, near Siliguri in West Bengal on Saturday.
No casualties have been reported so far.
"The fire was very wild when we came. The situation got tensed when a gas cylinder burst while we were pouring water. We tried to control it, and when we went inside found three cylinders," said Sankar Das, a fire officer.
The railway officers rushed to the spot to investigate the cause of the fire.

Today (5:05AM)  Four Jansadharan Special Trains today (www.news.newstelugu.net)
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New/Special TrainsSCR/South Central  -  

News Entry# 202170     
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To clear extra rush of passengers due to Railway Recruitment Cell (RRC) examination, four Jansadharan Special Trains will run from Secunderabad to Kakinada Town, Santragachi (Kolkata), Patna and Bhubaneshwar on November 23(Sunday)
Secunderabad to Kakinada Town: Train No.07206 Secunderabad-Kakinada Town Jansadharan Special trains will depart Secunderabad at 09:45 pm on November 23 (Sundays) and arrive Kakinada Town at 09:35 am on the next day.
Enroute, these special trains will stop Nalgonda, Miryalguda, Nadikuri, Gudivada, Kaikalur, Akividu, Bhimavaram Town, Tanuku, Nidadavolu, Rajahmundry and Samalkot stations. These special trains will have 12 coaches Viz., 10 General Second Class Coaches and two Second Class, Luggage Cum Brake Van Coaches.
Secunderabad to Santragachi (Kolkata): Train No. 08046 Secunderabad – Santragachi (Kolkata) Jansadharan Special Train will depart
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Secunderabad at 6.35 pm on November 23 (Sunday) and arrive Santragachi at 10.00 pm on the next day.
Enroute, this Jansadharan special train will stop at Moula-ali, Nalgonda, Miryalaguda, Pidugurala, Sattenapalle, Guntur, Vijayawada, Eluru, Tadepallegudem, Nidadavolu, Rajahmundry, Samalkot, Tuni, Anakapalle, Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram, Brahmapur, Khurda Road, Bhubaneshwar, Cuttack, Jaipur Keonjhar Road, Bhadrak, Balasore and Kharagpur stations. This train will consist of 18 Coaches viz., 16 General Second Class and 2 Second Class Luggage Cum Brake Van Coaches.
Secunderabad to Patna: Train No. 03242 Secunderabad-Patna Jansadharan Special train will depart Secunderabad at 10.00 pm on November 23 (Sunday) and arrive Patna at 07:45 am on the second day.
Enroute, this special train will stop at Kazipet, Ramagundam, Balharshah, Nagpur, Itarsi, Jabalpur, Katni, Satna, Allahabad, Varanasi, Mughalsarai, Didarnagar, Buxar, Ara and Danapur stations. This train will have 16 coaches Viz., 14 General Second Class Coaches and two Second Class, Luggage Cum Brake Van Coaches.
Secunderabad to Bhubaneshwar: Train No. 08404 Secunderabad – Bhubaneswar Jansadharan Special train will depart Secunderabad Station at 03:30 pm on November 23 (Sunday) and arrive Bhubaneswar at 04:30 pm on the next day.
Enroute, this Jansadharan Special train will stop at Moula-ali, Nalgonda, Miryalaguda, Pidugurala, Sattenapalle, Guntur, Vijayawada, Eluru, Tadepallegudem, Nidadavolu, Rajahmundry, Samalkot, Tuni, Duvvada, Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram, Srikakulam Road, Palasa, Brahmapur, Balugaon and Khurda Road stations. This train will have 15 Coaches viz., thirteen General Second Class and Second Class Luggage Cum Brake Van coaches.
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