“Safety remains the focus area of Railway operations and no one should let the guard down on that front. A thorough review and rechecking of all safety measures in running of trains needs to be taken up by all concerned” This was stated by Minister of Railways, Commerce & Industry and Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Shri Piyush Goyal while having a review meeting on “Safety Measures”, on 19 Mar 2021 with the Board Members and General Managers of Zonal Railways.
- While reviewing the safety performance, the Minister advised to focus on remedial measures for safety hazards like fire and ensuring alertness for signals and crossings.
- He asked the officers to focus on root cause analysis of breaches in safety and advised to launch a safety drive.
- Shri Piyush Goyal directed Railway officials to take pro active steps towards sensitising passengers against smoking in trains.
- He said that erring passengers need to be deterred from causing risks to others by smoking in the trains .
- Hon’ble Minister of Railways instructed that strict monitoring needs to be done to ensure that quality of materials, that is utilised in manufacture of the coaches, is of best possible quality.
- It may be noted that the safety performance of Indian Railways has been improving sharply over the past 3 years.
This has been achieved through various safety measures undertaken in Mission mode including the following:
- Elimination of All Unmanned Level Crossings eliminated on Broad Gauge since Jan 2019
- Accelerated elimination of Manned Level Crossing Gates
- Rehabilitation of bridges
- Track Renewals
- Production of ICF Coaches stopped from Jan 2018 .Safer LHB Coaches being built.
- Accelerated replacement of Old Mechanical Signalling with Electronic Signalling
- Introduction of Indigenous Train Collision Avoidance System [TCAS]
- Mechanised Maintenance and Inspection for Tracks & Bridges
- Simulator based Training of Locomotive Pilots
Key infrastructure initiatives:
A number of infrastructure development initiatives are envisaged in the National Rail Plan (NRP) being prepared by Indian Railways.
- The objective of the Plan is to create infrastructure capacity ahead of demand, which in turn would also cater to future growth in demand right up to 2050 and also increase the modal share of Railways to 45% in freight traffic and to continue to sustain it.
- The draft plan has been put up in the public domain (The Indian Railways website) and is also being circulated amongst stakeholders for comments/remarks.
The key infrastructure initiatives taken by Indian Railways to achieve objectives of AatmaNirbhar Bharat are:-
- Complete the identified 58 super critical, 68 critical and 20 coal projects for capacity augmentation.
- Complete all executable gauge conversion projects.
- As part of the National Rail Plan, Vision 2024 has been launched for accelerated implementation of certain critical projects by 2024 such as 100% electrification, up gradation of speed to 160 kmph on Delhi-Howrah and Delhi-Mumbai routes, up gradation of speed to 130kmph on all other Golden Quadrilateral-Golden Diagonal (GQ/GD) routes and elimination of all Level Crossings on all GQ/GD route.
- Proliferation of indigenously developed Automatic Train Protection (ATP) Systems in signaling for enhancing safety of running trains.
- All coaches manufactured in Production Units are completely indigenous except for the forged wheel and axle. Efforts are being made to indigenize them also.
- 97% of Electric loco equipment are indigenously sourced.
- Most of the track machines (around 87%) are manufactured in India.
- 3 new Dedicated Freight Corridors identified.
- Strive for Net zero carbon emission by 2030.
Source: PIB-Press Release