Delays leave passengers scrambling for meals

  • | Thursday | 30th November, 2023

Pune: Pharma firm employee Chandramani Chandrakar had a horrid experience while travelling by a Bihar-Pune special train with his parents last week as it was overly delayed and did not have even a pantry car.The train was delayed by more than 30 hours. It didnt have any facility for meals too. I ordered a pizza via the IRCTC app but did not receive it due to the inordinate train delay.Thepassengers had to make do with whatever eatables they could find at different stations, the quality of which was poor, Chandrakar told TOI.With the railways ban on the use of LPG cylinders in trains, passengers of many long-distance trains have to struggle to procure proper meals in the absence of pantry cars and related facilities. And train delays only add to their woes.I travelled to Bihar during Diwali and the train was delayed by almost 10 hours. I survived on biscuits, considering the poor quality of food at most stations, Handewadi resident Jatin Sharma said.Ramdas Bhise, the divisional commercial manager and PRO of Pune rail division, said the new LHB (Linke Hofmann Busch) rakes were equipped with pantry services. The old ICF (Integral Coach Factory) dont have the same now as the use of LPG cylinders has been banned for safety. In Pune, most trains now have LHB rakes. Some trains like the Azad Hind Express and Jhelum Express have ICF rakes. In these trains, food is picked up from base kitchens of IRCTC and stored. In LHB rakes, electrical ovens are used to prepare food, he said.Another railway official said the special trains didnt have pantry services. Around 21 special trains operate during Diwali and Chhath festivals in Pune. Base kitchens are present only at big stations. The IRCTC has an e-catering service. Train side vending facility has also been introduced at stations. But many passengers, especially those from the rural background, are not aware of these services, the official said.Naveen Singh, who had travelled by the Azad Hind Express around three months back, said he had to struggle to get even a bottle of water. The train was running late by 8 hours. As no water bottle was available at the pantry car, I had to get down at a remote station to buy one. Why cant the railways ensure an effective pantry service at least in long-distance trains? the Narhe resident asked.Rail officials said they were trying to convert all the ICF coaches into LHB rakes. Special festive trains are run for the sole purpose of ensuring that people reach home during festivals, another official said.

If You Like This Story, Support NYOOOZ



Your support to NYOOOZ will help us to continue create and publish news for and from smaller cities, which also need equal voice as much as citizens living in bigger cities have through mainstream media organizations.

Stay updated with all the Pune Latest News headlines here. For more exclusive & live news updates from all around India, stay connected with NYOOOZ.

Related Articles