Indian Railways tackles with complaints of train delays, bad food and cleanliness almost on a daily basis so much so that not even premier trains like Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express are spared the embarrassment. However, the grievances of passengers may come down as Suresh Prabhu led Railway ministry is chalking out a detailed plan to upgrade the services in such trains. The ministry will soon launch ‘Operation Swarn’ under which these two train services (Rajdhani and Shatabdi) will get a major makeover.
The ministry will spend Rs 50 lakh on Rajdhanis and Shatabdis on various routes in a phased manner for better customer experience and satisfaction, reported Financial Express. The Railway board will try to bring the quality and service standards of these trains to levels similar to the newly launched trains – Tejas Express and Humsafar Express.
The ministry has identified 10 key areas where there is a huge scope for improvement. These include cleanliness, linen, coach interiors, toilets, catering among other things. The punctuality of the trains is also a major issue that needs to be addressed. Wi-fi, coffee vending machines and infotainment screens may also form part of this upgrade plan. Additionally, staff behaviour, better security could also be part of the project.
The board have earlier formed nine commitees that was assigned to analyse each issue in depth and present a detailed report along with an action plan for improvement on June 6. Notedly, premier train services have often faced crticism over several years for its deteriorating service standards and punctuality issues. The Railways’ move also came after complaints by passengers that fares in such trains have gotten costlier due to dynamic fare pricing but there was no commensurate improvement in facilities.
Inthe beginning, the Mumbai-Delhi Rajdhani Express and Mumbai-Ahmedabad Shatabdi are likely to get an upgrade. “Rs 50 lakh each will be allotted to Rajdhanis and Shatabdis on various routes in a phased manner so that we can upgrade them for better customer experience and satisfaction,” the railway official told FE Online.