If you are travelling with Indian Railways especially towards the eastern states, chances are you may have to check a calendar rather than a watch to ascertain the arrival of delayed trains.
But of all the trains currently running late, this one takes not just the cake, but also the bakery. A goods train wagon carrying a consignment of fertilizer from Vishakhapatnam, took nearly four years to reach its destination, UP’s Basti railway station.
The train carrying 1,316 bags of Di-ammonium Phosphate (DAP) fertilizer was booked on November 10, 2014. When it reached Basti even the Railway officials were taken aback having not expected a consignment to reach four years late. This, despite the fact that the distance is only 1326 kms, which even a train moving at average speed could cover in 42 hours.
Soon, the Chief Public Relation Officer of North Eastern Railway zone, Sanjay Yadav came with an explanation. “Sometimes, when some wagon or bogie becomes sick (unfit to ferry), it is sent to the yard and it seems that the same happened in this case too,” he told PTI.
The consignee is Ramchandra Gupta, a businessman of Basti, and the wagon was booked in his name in 2014 from Vishakhapatnam through Indian Potash Limited (IPL), Mr Yadav said.
When consignee Ramchandra Gupta was contacted he admitted that the wagon was indeed booked in his name but it was a company material and he had not paid for it. The matter is between the company and the Indian Railways, he added.
Talking about the late arrival of the goods train, Indian Potash Limited Assistant Marketing Manager in Gorakhpur, DK Saxena said, “Yes, in November 2014 a rake was booked from Vishkhapatnam for Basti area distributers, and somehow the wagon was missed from the rake.”
He noted that the company has already lodged a claim on Railways and they will receive the consignment which costs around Rs 14 lakh after assessment of the material.