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From: S Pai <pai>>

Subject: news

Date: 19 Jun 1996 15:32:00 -0500


Some snippets of news from the last few weeks.

-Satish

----------------------------------------------------------------

+ Konkan Railway told to go in for bridges

Panaji - Already troubled by technical problems in the construction of
four tunnels on this segment, the Konkan Railway Corp. (KRC), has now
been asked by the Goa government to build bridges over the Khazan
(agricultural and piscicultural) lands at Cortalim, South Goa, where
the railway embankment has been continuously sinking since it was
constructed.

+ Japan to give 29 billion rupees in aid for Orissa rail projects

Marubeni and the Exim Bank of Japan have agreed to provide
a 29 billion rupee loan for the development of railway infrastructure
in the eastern state of Orissa. The loan, to be routed through the
Indian Railway Board, would mainly go into financing a number of
pending railway projects that are considered crucial to augment coal
and iron ore transportation between mines and sites of major steel
plants in the state.

+ Railways plan hike in freight rates

The railways propose to increase freight rates by up to
seven percent in the current financial year, and a steep increase in
short-distance seasonal fares is on the cards. The organisation
proposes to earn roughly nine billion rupees through the hike in
freight and fare charges.

From: Prakash Tendulkar <prakasht@VNET.email

Subject: Rajdhani

Date: 19 Jun 1996 11:49:00 -0500


Friends,

I found following append on one of the forums. Can anyone help this
person? Thanks in advance.

Prakash
========================================
From: Per Sol <persol@online.email
Subject: Re: Rajdhani Express

I will be In Dehli on july the 15th, and need information on when the
Rajdhani Express to Calcutta is leaving New Dehli !

Pel

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Re: Rajdhani

Date: 20 Jun 1996 22:01:00 -0500


Rajdhani for Howrah leaves at 17:15 from New Delhi.
But note that the new timetable will be in force from
July 1st. But usually the Rajdhani timing changes by
a few minutes only.

-dheeraj
--------------
Dheeraj Sanghi +91 (512) 25-7077 (Off)
Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering +91 (512) 25-8627 (Res)
Indian Institute of Technology +91 (512) 25-0260 (Fax)
Kanpur - 208 016 (UP), INDIA. dheeraj@iitk.email

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: changes in IR policies.

Date: 25 Jun 1996 05:25:00 -0500


It seems that we are going to see significant changes in IR
policies in near future. According to a report in Times of India,
the new minister has started to review all efforts in the direction
of privatization. For example, the contract for maintenance of
Delhi Junction has been cancelled. Contracts at other stations will
be reviewed. There will be no new advertising in station areas,
no leasing out of railway land to private parties for commercial
exploitation, until the review is over. No new luxury trains
("Palace on Wheels" type) that were supposed to be run by private
companies, will be started (other than those already contracted).
The minister is said to have told that IR is becoming elitist,
only thinking of passengers who want to travel in AC comfort,
and not running enough trains in backward areas. It is being
interpreted as no new Rajdhani and Shatabdi in the new timetable.

The budget is expected to be presented on 16th July. Besides
the usual 10 percent hike in freight and upper classes, it
is expected that urban commuters will have to shell out
significantly larger sums for monthly season tickets.

-dheeraj

--------------
Dheeraj Sanghi +91 (512) 25-7077 (Off)
Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering +91 (512) 25-8627 (Res)
Indian Institute of Technology +91 (512) 25-0260 (Fax)
Kanpur - 208 016 (UP), INDIA. dheeraj@iitk.email

From: Prakash Tendulkar <prakasht@VNET.email

Subject: Konkan Railway

Date: 25 Jun 1996 13:10:00 -0500


I received the following article from Goan forum.

Prakash
=================================
KONKAN RAILWAY, A SINKING PROJECT: Rail embankments built on the
marshy banks of the Zuari river have begun to sink and block the flow
of creek waters... 500 farmers in the area have not been able to
cultivate their land and for two years, the KRC (Konkan Railway
Corporation) has been forced to pay them compensation...The crunch of
funds and the soft soil found in four tunnels in Goa has already
delayed the Konkan railway work till March next year, a new deadline
secretly set by the KRC authorities. "Sandesh Prabhudessai in
CURRENT, Mumbai, June 15]
- ------------------------------------------------------------
BUSINESS STANDARD: Konkan Rail caught in crossfire between (new union
railways minister Ram Vilas) Paswan and Alemao. By Rahul Goswami,
June 10. (Alemao is MP from Goa)

From: Pushkar Apte <apte@spdc.email

Subject: Pre-budget

Date: 27 Jun 1996 10:20:00 -0500


Paswan promises more 12-coach local trains

Source: Times of India June 27, Mumbai

An additional train to Patna from Mumbai, a 50 per cent increase in
the number of 12-coach trains on the Western Railway (WR) and
introducing telephone facility in long distance trains were some of
the important announcements made by the minister for railways Ramvilas
Paswan in Mumbai on Wednesday.

Mr Paswan was talking to mediapersons after a two-hour meeting
regarding railway-related problems with MPs from Mumbai and Thane and
members of the Railway Board. "This was an important pre-budget
meeting with MPs, just like the finance minister has with
industrialists before the budget, Mr Paswan said. The railway budget
will be presented in the Parliament on July 16.


Regards,
Pushkar
-------

From: Kandaswami, Auroprem* <kandaswami#m#_auroprem*@msgate.email

Subject: SER Derailment News

Date: 28 Jun 1996 08:05:00 -0500


Train services in the South-Eastern Railway were disrupted yesterday following the derailment of a goods train between Balichak and Radhamohanpur Stations about 100 kilometres from Calcutta. A
number of long distance trains were detained for several hours and a few trains are cancelled.

(AIR : 28 June, 1996)

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Rly Budget will focus on Bihar.

Date: 03 Jul 1996 05:01:00 -0500


There is a report in ToI dated 29th June, which says that Paswan
seems to have said on a trip to Bihar that the coming Rly Budget
will focus on Bihar. He has promised creation of a new Rly Zone
for Bihar. This will cost IR Rs 700 crore over next 5 years.
The headquarter will be, where else, but at Hazipur. A new
Railway Division would be created with HQ at Ranchi. This would
cost Rs. 100 crore. There will be a new rail-bridge over Ganga
somewhere. Arrah-Sasaram broadgauge line may be sanctioned.
Paswan has also announced a daily Rajdhani train Delhi-Lucknow-Patna.
Guwahati Rajdhani would be made 6 days a week. These also go via
Patna. So, Patna will really be pampered with Rajdhanis. This
is soon after his announcement that Railways has only cared about
Rajdhani and Shatabdi, and that he would start trains for 2nd class
passengers. A new tri-weekly train between Patna and Bombay, and
a daily train between Raxaul and Kanyakumari would be introduced.
Madras-Patna express would be thrice a week instead of once a week.

-dheeraj
`a

From: Prakash Tendulkar <prakasht@VNET.email

Subject: Bandit Queen and Indian Railway

Date: 02 Jul 1996 07:56:00 -0500


The former `bandit queen' seems to have taken her new role as a law-maker
rather too seriously. Phoolan Devi, the newly elected Samajwadi Party MP
from Mirzapur, offered a sample of her respect for law on Sunday when a
non-stop train stopped at two small stations between Delhi and Kanpur to
give her a drop. That's not all. She travelled in the locomotive, which is
illegal for even senior railway officers unless they have been authorised
to do so. (TI July 2, New Delhi)

From: <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Re: Bandit Queen and Indian Railway

Date: 03 Jul 1996 20:18:00 -0500


Phoolan Devi asked Tundla station master to stop Shatabdi Express
there. She, along with her husband and a bodyguard, boarded the
locomotive, and asked the driver to stop the train at Etawah,
where all of them got down. An enquiry has been ordered, which
is likely to find fault with the Tundla station master and the
driver to allow this thing to happen. One wonders why she did
this, since for such a small distance, Shatabdi would take as
much time, as any other train, and soon after Shatabdi, there
are 2 superfast trains on that route. I guess she just loves
to throw her weight around. She is really enjoying being an
MP, and she realizes that this is only for 1 year or so.

This is not the first time Phoolan Devi has done such a thing.
One month ago, she created a scene at Kanpur Central. This was
the day before the parliament session, and several area MPs had
reservations in Prayag Raj. Of course, they all misbehaved with
Railway officials, since not all of them could be given lower
births, or some such thing. But Phoolan Devi didn't even have
reservation. She demanded 3 births (they are entitled to only 2),
but at that late stage, she could not get even 1. All the quota
births were already occupied by MPs, ex-MPs, and their companions.
If she had asked for reservation earlier, they can always give her
births from those cancelled (instead of moving the waiting list),
but after the charts are out, and train has arrived, the only
option was to force some passenger out of his birth, which would
have satisfied Phoolan Devi, but Railway officials refused to do
so. Because of all this problem, train left an hour late, without
Phoolan Devi. She was adjusted in Rajdhani in the morning.

-dheeraj

From: Prakash Tendulkar <prakasht@VNET.email

Subject: Phoolan Devi and Indian Railway

Date: 03 Jul 1996 08:47:00 -0500


Railway minister Ram Vilas Paswan, on Tuesday sought to underplay
the alleged hijacking of the Lucknow-bound Shatabdi Express by Ms
Phoolan Devi on Sunday, saying the reported incident was not as
"serious" as it is made out to be, reports our correspondent.
Maintaining that an "authentic" version of the incident was yet to
reach Rail Bhawan, he told reporters that Ms Phoolan Devi and her
husband were traveling by the Shatabdi Express in the executive
class and did not make any unauthorized halt at Tundla as alleged
in a news report. (AA July 3, Gwalior)

Phoolan Devi in action
Source: TI July 3, Gwalior

Dacoit-turned-politician and Samajwadi Party MP Phoolan Devi on
Monday tried unsuccessfully to enter the central jail in Gwalior,
where she was once kept as a prisoner for about ten years
following her surrender. According to the jail authorities, Ms
Phoolan accompanied by her husband and a dozen of her supporters
reached the main gate of the Central Jail and asked the guards to
open the gate, saying she wanted to inspect jail premises and meet
the inmates. She was carrying clothes, fruits and eatables for
distribution to the inmates, the authorities said. When the guards
refused to obey her orders, she went to jail superintendent
Mangal Prasad and demanded that she be let in, but the latter
refused to accede to her demand on the ground that the visiting
time was over and requested her to come the next day. But the
superintendent's reply only enraged Ms Phoolan and her associates
all the more. Abusing the superintendent, the furious MP
threatened him of dire consequences and said she would "set every
one right" when she would become the home minister after three
months," the jail authorities said.

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Bandit Queen and Indian Railways.

Date: 04 Jul 1996 22:05:00 -0500


According to yesterday's newspaper, the Railway Board is putting
the following spin on the whole story.

Phoolan Devi was travelling in Shatabdi from New Delhi. So there is
no question of her forcing Tundla Station Master to stop the train.
The driver of Shatabdi was retiring that day. Lots of his friends
had planned a little celebration in Tundla. He knew about it, and
he stopped the train, even though he had a green signal. Phoolan
Devi came out and went to engine to see what was happening. The
driver was a fan of Phoolan Devi (a member of some group that
Phoolan Devi had floated), so he invited her in the engine, along
with her husband and bodyguard. When he found out that Phoolan
actually had to go to Etawah, and not to Kanpur, he on his own
stopped the train at Etawah. So, the only person who is at fault
in the whole episode is the driver of the train, and he has since
retired. So there cannot be any action against him. The story
has been told to reporters by the new Chairman, Railway Board.

I knew that our bureacracy can come up with better plots than
bollywood, but this is just too great.

By the way, the Rail minister calls Phoolan Devi his sister.
She ties Rakhi to him, it seems.

In another incident on Tuesday, Phoolan Devi went to
Central Jail, Gwalior (she seems to be really using her free
rail pass), and demanded to meet her cell-mates. (She was
lodged in Gwalior jail, before she was released on parole,
and became an MP.) She went there with her supporters, and
when she was not allowed in, she created a scene there.

-dheeraj

--------------
Dheeraj Sanghi +91 (512) 25-7077 (Off)
Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering +91 (512) 25-8627 (Res)
Indian Institute of Technology +91 (512) 25-0260 (Fax)
Kanpur - 208 016 (UP), INDIA. dheeraj@iitk.email

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Bandit Queen again.

Date: 04 Jul 1996 23:23:00 -0500


Here is a joke making rounds here:

In the new Rail budget to be presented on 16th, there will be a
new train proposed on the lines of Bombay-Pune Deccan Queen.

It will be Bandit Queen express between Mirzapur and Hazipur.

-dheeraj

PS: For those not too familiar with Indian politics, Mirzapur is
Phoolan Devi's constituency, and Hazipur is Paswan's constituency.

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Bandit Queen again.

Date: 05 Jul 1996 22:56:00 -0500


In yesterday's newspaper, there was another twist to the story.
It seems that the driver and co-driver have both given a statement
to the enquiry committee to the effect that they had no idea of
whether Phoolan Devi was travelling in that train or not. They
didn't meet her. There is no question of her travelling in
the locomotive. The train stopped at Tundla for 4 minutes and
Etawah for 3 minutes. Both times it stopped because friends
of the driver wanted to wish him good luck after retirement.

In other IR related news, the diesel prices have been increased
by 30%, and most State Electricity Boards have raised electricity
prices by more than 20%. Considering this, the Railways will
have to increase the fares quite substantially, though Paswan
seems to be resisting any increase in the fare. According to
the newspaper reports, the Railway Board officials showed him
some calculations that all the projects that he has promised
in last one month alone would cost Rs. 30,000 crore. After
this, Paswan has promised to be more careful in his speeches,
and he probably will not oppose a fare hike.

-dheeraj

--------------
Dheeraj Sanghi +91 (512) 25-7077 (Off)
Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering +91 (512) 25-8627 (Res)
Indian Institute of Technology +91 (512) 25-0260 (Fax)
Kanpur - 208 016 (UP), INDIA. dheeraj@iitk.email

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: IR under MRPT act.

Date: 06 Jul 1996 21:28:00 -0500


In a landmark judgement, MRTPC (Monopolies and Restrictive
Trade Practices Commision) has decided that govt. services like
Railways, Telephones, etc., fall under the perview of MRPT act.

In the continuing saga of Bandit Queen, the Indian Express
is reporting that Shatabdi was stopped at Tundla by her by
detonating a device. (As most of you are aware, if they want
to stop a train where there is no signal, they can attach
a device to the rails, and when train passes over it, it
detonates, making a loud noise, and the driver is supposed
to stop the train.) Anyway, it is clear that no action
will be taken against anyone, and it is getting boring.

But Phoolan Devi continues to make news. She has now
threatened to teach a lesson to some Lucknow magazine,
if they published anything negative about her.

-dheeraj

From: J.J. Rainbow <J.J.Rainbow@newcastle.email

Subject: Re: Yes, Minister!

Date: 06 Jul 1996 21:28:00 -0500


On Wed, 5 Jun 1996, Dheeraj Sanghi wrote:

>
> He said a few other things as well.
>
> 1. All casual labour should be regularized. There are 83,000 of them.
> IR already has an overstaffing of the order of 400,000.
> 2. More railway lines in backward areas of Bihar. (Presuambly, without
> studying their economic viability.)
> 3. Special drives to recruit SC/ST/OBC folks into IR.
>
> Just when we thought that IR is starting to get affected by the
> economic liberalization, we get a minister like Paswan.
>
> -dheeraj
>Just about what I expect will happen in England when we elect a Labour
Govt and the unions start demanding the payback for keeping quiet.
I know that SC/ST are scheduled tribes and castes, but what are OBC?

Julian

From: Kandaswami, Auroprem* <kandaswami#m#_auroprem*@msgate.email

Subject: Chidambaram refuses Stop offer

Date: 09 Jul 1996 15:48:00 -0500


Chidambaram Says "No" To Stopping Train

In order not to give rise to another controversy, a la Bandit Queen Phoolan Devi, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram refused the Aligarh authorities` offer to board the Rajdhani Express which does not have
a regular halt at Aligarh. "Please do not stop any train for me," Chidambaram said when the city police chief offered to stop the Patna-New Delhi Rajdhani Express at Aligarh to facilitate his swift return journey to Delhi on Friday so that he could attend the ongoing Chief Ministers conference. Finally, Chidambaram boarded the Magadh Express which has a scheduled stopping in Aligarh.

(The Hindu, dt. 08 July 1996)

Auro

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: major derailment on Kanpur-Tundla route.

Date: 10 Jul 1996 22:00:00 -0500


A goods train was derailed on Kanpur-Tundla section on early morning
of 8th. Track was severely damaged. Several trains were cancelled.
Some trains were re-routed via Jhansi. It was supposed to have been
restored by 9th evening.

-dheeraj

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <dheeraj@iitk.email

Subject: Jaipur Shatabdi.

Date: 10 Jul 1996 22:02:00 -0500


Jaipur Shatabdi has been speeded up substantially. From 5 hours
the time has been reduced to 4 hours 10 minutes or so. An
additional stop at Delhi Cantt has also been provided.

-dheeraj

From: Vadivelu Elumalai <vadi@altagroup.email

Subject: 6 New Railway Zones Proposed

Date: 15 Jul 1996 05:27:00 -0500


6 New Railway Zones Proposed

Union Railway Minister Ram Vilas Paswan has proposed creation of six railway
zones. The proposal envisages minimum possible expenditure through paperless
offices and modern management techniques. The proposal is on the basis of a
heavy increase in traffic flow and the fact that workload has crossed the
optimum level. There are nine zones at present in the country. The new zones
are proposed at Patna, Bhubaneswar, Bangalore, Jabalpur, Jaipur and Allahabad.

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