Change in timings holds up MRTS services
By H Sheik Mydeen / ENS - CHENNAI
12th July 2012 09:21 AM
As per the new schedule announced by the Massive Rapid Transport System (MRTS), train timings have been changed and now, the time for journey between the Chennai Beach station and Velachery has increased to 45 minutes from the previous 40 minutes.
As a result of the time change, commuters alleged that four services between Beach to Velachery have been suspended by the Southern Railway.
According to a circular issued by the Divisional Railway Manager of Southern Railway to station masters of the MRTS, schedule for the day and night trains including Sunday trains has been changed. The new arrangement came into effect on 9 July.
A station master said, “Due to the emergency maintenance of the track stretching from the Chennai Beach to Velachery, Railway administration asked MRTS to increase the train journey time from 40 minutes to 50. But MRTS has increased the journey time by only five minutes, after considering commuter grievances.”
“I come from Perungudi to Fort by the MRTS train. After the implementation of the new schedule, we could not identify the new timings. We came to know that four services have been suspended silently in the wake of the new schedule. Railway administration has to restore the suspended services,” said R Krishna Prabu, an advocate.
N S Raju, a banker from Perungudi, said the new schedule was yet to be put up in the stations and the old timing list continues to be displayed. “We did not get any intimation about the changes,” he said.
Officers at the Southern Railways said that they have to look into the matter of maintenance, as it is one of their top priorities for safety.
A manager from MRTS said, “The 21-kilometre-stretch between Beach and Velachery route has many curves that create frequent problems in the wheels of the trains. Consequently, we have to send the train for frequent service to repair the wheels. Due to the curve point weakness, railway has suspended some of the services for the emergency repair work in the route.”
MRTS started its journey from 1997 and as of now, every day, excluding Sunday, 78,000 commuters use this service and 45,000 passengers utilise it on Sundays. In the peak hours from 7 am to 10 am, nine car trains have been running and six car trains are operated in the remaining hours.
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