NEW DELHI: Railways now plans to counsel passengers travelling on the newly launched Varanasi-New Delhi Mahamana Express about etiquette after pictures showing garbage dumps, damaged accessories and blocked washbasins in its coaches surfaced.
Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu also expressed concern and sought preventive measures.
The train equipped with special features such as controlled discharged water taps, new toilet modules, exhaust fans, LED lights, snack tables for side-berth passengers and fire retardation materials was launched on January 22 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from his Lok Sabha constituency.
Pictures have been posted on various social media platforms showing the mess created by passengers. Railways has spent nearly Rs 30 lakh for the new coaches which have ergonomically designed ladders for climbing up to upper berths and windows with powered Venetian blinds and roller blinds instead of conventional curtains.
“Railways was really troubled looking at images which surfaced within 10 running days of the train. Passengers have made the coaches dirty with garbage dumped on floor, blocking washbasins and toilets and damaging accessories,” said a senior ministry official.
The train has been running at full capacity since second day after the flag-off and is quite popular. “The sorry state of coaches is not just limited to general or sleeper ones but AC 2 and 3 tier also. We just don’t know how to check this,” said the official.
The Northern Railways said that it would counsel passengers to keep the coaches clean and use the other accessories with care to prevent any damage.
“We plan to put more staff like electricians on the train and have asked ticket collectors to keep vigil and counsel passengers against damaging Railways property. A campaign will be run to educate passengers to keep the train clean,” said a Northern Railways PRO.
The fares of the train except in unreserved class were increased by 15 per cent.