#Coronavirus: 80% Trains Expected To Start From April 15th; Masks Will Be Compulsory For All Passengers
Some days back, we’d informed you that in order to help the public combat the coronavirus pandemic, the govt of India launched a new app, the ‘Aarogya Setu’ tracking app to track if you are at risk by scanning through a database of known cases across India, and also via location.
Also, complying with the 21 days nationwide combat by PM Modi, to control the spread of coronavirus in the country, all the passenger services had been temporarily suspended for this stipulated period.
Now, as 14th April comes nearer, the Indian Railways has begun preparing to resume all its services from April 15.
Indian Railways Prepares for Restoration Plan
As per the officials, railways have discussed the option of resuming services only on specific approval of each train from the Railway Board.
Instead of focusing on revenue generation, Indian railways has focused on passenger safety and to ensure that the disease does not spread.
Sources said all railway safety personnel, running staff, guards, TTE and other officials have been told to be ready to join their posts from April 15.
However, trains will begin operations only after a green signal from the government which had formed a Group of Ministers (GoM) on the issue.
In the zones, officials are also identifying trains and routes which can be resumed with the approval of the board. The focus, say officials, is to see if routes catering to migrant workers can be resumed initially and also those that are not travelling or has halts at COVID-19 hotspots.
Some More Insights
Railways is also unlikely to rescind a March 19 order suspending all concessions for passengers except those offered to patients, students and people with disabilities in a hurry, even after the lockdown period to discourage unnecessary travel.
They are mulling options like thermal screening and other methods to screen passengers boarding trains.
Around 80% are expected to run as per schedule from April 15 which include Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duronto trains. Local trains are likely to begin operations too.
Senior officials, however, said no fresh orders have been issued and since cancellations were only upto April 14 “no fresh orders required for starting with effect from April 15.”
Aarogya Setu App to be used by Railways
Once the services are resumed, the Indian Railways are thinking of using the Aarogya app to check the health and wellness of patients and allow only healthy passengers to board trains.
As part of its preparedness, the Indian Railways has also asked zones to ensure the security of coaches parked in depots.
The focus now for railways is to ensure that the rakes of passenger trains which were suspended due to the lockdown had returned to their respective bases, received proper maintenance like charging of batteries, cleaning of bio-toilets.
Speaking of the app, it will be using the smartphone’s GPS system and Bluetooth and provide information that will help in determining if you have been near a Covid-19 infected person or not.
The application determines if you are at risk by scanning through a database of known cases across India, and also via location.