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Blog Entry# 4180204
Posted: Jan 01 (22:06)

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Jan 01 (22:06)   92 train cancellations in 2018 make Kashmir railways suffer Rs 1.21 cr losses

Jayashree ❖ Amita*^   46276 news posts
Entry# 4180204   News Entry# 372911         Tags   Past Edits
With train services being suspended by authorities as many as 92 times during 2018, railways in Kashmir suffered losses of almost Rs 1.21 crore. 
As per railways data, train services has remained off the track for more than 240 days since 2016 unrest in the Valley. Authorities often suspend the rail services on the 137-kilometer rail line between Banihal and Baramulla as a “precautionary measure” citing “law and order” as the reason.
A senior railway official told Greater Kashmir that 63 partial shutdowns and 29 complete suspension of railway services in 2018, caused
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railways to suffer losses amounting to Rs 1.21 crore.  The highest number of times train service suspended was in June 2018 when train services remained off the track for 12 days.
“On an average, we have Rs 2 lakh earnings daily which means we have suffered almost Rs 1.21 crore losses in 2018. In addition maintaining the assets of the railways also involves a huge cost which puts us in red,” said a railways official. 
As per railway officials, 15 pairs of train run regularly over the railway line from Banihal to Baramulla and carry almost 30,000 commuters including students and government employees, except one day in a week. Bulk of the total losses suffered during last 4 years worth Rs 4 crore was faced during four month long suspension between July 9, 2016 to November 11, 2016, the officials said.
Deepak Kumar, chief public relations Officer, Northern Railways  told Greater Kashmir that apart from losses suffered due to ticket sales coming to a grinding halt on days of suspension of train service, operational costs also add to railways’ burden.
“There are costs involved to run day-to-day operations of railways assets in the Valley such as involvement of station masters’, gatemen, trollymen and patrolmen who do patrolling of the railway tracks. All this manpower and sources also add to the cost and in absence of smooth services, overhead costs add to burden of losses,” Kumar said.
Railway officials in the Valley said they will be informing the divisional administration about the losses soon. “We will be writing a letter to divisional administration to apprise them of the total impact of the train shutdowns so that they can also quantify overall economic losses. We hope in days to come it is ensured that train movement is more punctual,” said the official.
Frequent suspensions of the train service are causing hardships to commuters. “I prefer to travel by train but the disruptions make it very inconvenient for me,” said Muhammad Altaf, a commuter. “While travelling in passenger cabs or buses takes more time due to jams, train service is more convenient for commuting long distances.” 
Another commuter wishing anonymity said the service is being suspended even when a small   incident takes place.
“How can the authorities think of start running a luxurious sunroof-top AC Coach for tourists when it cannot ensure smooth operations of the regular trains? It is quite sad the way railway is stuck in a catch-22 situation,” he said.

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