Seeking justice for ex-servicemen, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy today met Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and raised the issue of one-rank one-pension, PTI News reported
Mumbai continues to witness more deaths on tracks due the apathy shown by the Railways either while dealing with traffic situation or helping victims in the golden hour
Mumbai's suburban train network or local trains, continue to kill about 10-15 commuters and injure 15-20 people every day in rail related accidents. Although, the suburban rail network is labelled as Mumbai's lifeline, the same is increasing turning into a 'deathline' for some commuters. In fact, several times in the past, the Railways have incurred the wrath of the Bombay High Court and yet, there is no respite for commuters.
According to railway police statistics, about 3,600 people die and over 4,000 are injured every year, with activists blaming overcrowding and the lackadaisical attitude of railway authorities for the mishaps. Samir Zaveri, who lost both his legs at the age of 16 and is now helping improve railway services, said, "There is a failure to provide first aid and a delay in taking injured commuters to hospitals. Since ambulances are not available at railway stations, many commuters bleed to death.”
During 2012, in Mumbai alone, around 3,541 people died while 3,808 were injured in railway accidents. This happens due to overcrowding of suburban or local trains.
Specifically, a twelve-car rake carries over 8,000 passengers against its carrying capacity of 1,800, which leads to unbearably overcrowded trains during peak hours.
The once efficient suburban rail network is the lifeline of Mumbai, however over the past two decades, it is creaking under the weight of passenger influx, corruption and lack of investment in upgrading infrastructure. The extraordinary crowding of trains and poor commuter facilities as stations makes the Mumbai suburban train system so prone to accidents that nearly 10 people die in railway mishaps every day – a figure that would have made frontpage news anywhere else in the world but meets with apathy in India.
Earlier this month, the Bombay HC, while hearing a petition filed by Samir Zaveri rapped the Railways for its plan to levy a 'golden hour cess' to fund setting up emergency medical rooms at 15 stations. A division bench of Justice Abhay Oka and Justice Ajay Gadkari, said, ''This (providing medical aid) is your constitutional and legal obligation. You want to recover cess from passengers for providing medical help?''
The HC has scheduled the next hearing of the case on 24 December 2014, and have asked the railways to file its affidavit on the issue.
After a trauma centre was set up at Dadar railway station on the orders of the court, the HC in March 2013 ordered the Railways to consider setting up such rooms at other major stations — Churchgate, Mumbai Central, Bandra, Andheri, Borivli, Vasai, Palghar, Kurla, Thane, Dombivli, Kalyan, Karjat, Wadala, Vashi and Panvel — which had seen over a 100 accidents in the previous year.
The suburban railway system in Mumbai is the most complex, densely loaded and intensively utilised system in the world and has the highest passenger density in the world—over 70 lakh commuters travel every day.
Moneylife Foundation has set up the Samir Zaveri Railway Helpline that provides email assistance to all commuters. (http://foundation.moneylife.in/?page_id=6196)
Railway Minister Prabhu said due to financial constraints, the Railways has not been able to guard each and every level crossing and efforts were on to gather resources for the purpose
Civil society, NGOs, socio- political organisations will be asked to provide volunteers to guard more than 11,000 unmanned railway crossings across the country to minimise death on tracks, Lok Sabha was told today .
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said during Question Hour that a decision has been taken to publish advertisements inviting civil society, NGOs, socio-political organisations to provide volunteers to guard the unmanned railway crossings.
Prabhu said 18,735 people have lost their lives in railway accidents this year till October of which 5,000 alone in areas falling under the Northern Railway zone.
Prabhu said that due to financial constraints, the Railways has not been able to guard each and every level crossing and efforts were on to gather resources for the purpose.
"We will also see whether home guards can be deployed in unmanned railway crossings," he said.
Replying to a supplementary, he said it was practically not possible to set up a hospital at each station but whenever an injured person is found, the guard of the concerned train informs the station superintendent of the nearest station, who arranges for medical assistance to the injured besides informing police.