South Central Railway, even in the prevailing pandemic times due to outbreak of COVID19, has been continuously operating freight and parcel trains to ensure that the supply chain, particularly of essential commodities, remains intact across the Nation.
Now the services of the Zone during the current lockdown have crossed the country borders wherein essential commodities are also being transported to the neighbouring country viz., Bangladesh.
Four rakes of essential Agricultural products have been successfully loaded and despatched from different stations of the Zone during the current month.
Traditionally, transportation of these essential products to Bangladesh was being done regularly by Roadways. During the lockdown period as all the State & International borders have been impacted, transportation by roadways has been adversely affected. SCR Officials under the guidance of Shri Gajanan Mallya, General Manager held numerous discussions with consignors for transporting this essential commodity by Railways.
As a result, the zone has successfully sent the following freight trains in the current month to Bangladesh:
- One rake consisting of 42 wagons with 2477 tonnes of Dry chillies has been loaded and despatched from Tadepalligudem station to Darshan Station in Bangladesh on 12th May, 2020.
- One rake consisting of 42 wagons with 2472 tonnes of onions has been loaded and despatched from Nagarsol station to Darshan station on 26th May, 2020.
- Two rakes consisting of 42 wagons each with total of 4928 tonnes of Dry chillies, Turmeric and Ginger have been loaded and despatched from Reddipalemrailway station to Benapole railway station on 26th & 27th May, 2020.
Guntur is well known for red chillies crop and the product is internationally acknowledged by all for its unique quality. So far, the farmers and merchants have been transporting red chillies by road to Bangladesh which was costing around Rs 7000 per tonne. Now, due to the lockdown, Railways has come to their rescue and arranged wagons for transportation by Rail which is also proving very cost effective. The average cost of transportation by railways works out to just Rs 2600 per tonne. Further, transportation by Railways is also one of the safest modes of transport. Enthused by these factors, the freight customers in and around Guntur have been showing interest to further increase their transportation by Railways.
Shri Gajanan Mallya, General Manager, SCR has appreciated the marketing efforts of Officers and staff of Guntur, Vijayawada and Nanded Divisions in capturing the new traffic to the new destinations which is also long lead traffic. He assured the freight customers that the Railways will extend support in all aspects to encourage loading of these agricultural products by Rail to Bangladesh.
He also opined that transportation of products by Rail is not only economically beneficial to Consignors but also helps in smooth supply of these essential products to the neighbouring country in a safest and fastest manner.
Source: South Central Railway-Press Release