Indian Railways Cancelled Record 9000 Trains In 2022 (Till June): Here Is The Primary Reason Why?

Indian Railways Cancelled Record 9000 Trains In 2022 (Till June): Here Is The Primary Reason Why?
Indian Railways Cancelled Record 9000 Trains In 2022 (Till June): Here Is The Primary Reason Why?

An RTI response revealed that Indian Railways  cancelled almost 9,000 train services this year. 

Out of these canceled trains, over 1,900 were due to coal movement in the last three months.

How Did This Happen? 

 Indian Railways informed that it cancelled 6,995 train services for maintenance work or for construction purposes, while 1,934 services were cancelled from March to May due to coal movement, in a response to a query under the Right To Information (RTI) Act filed by Chandra Shekhar Gaur. 

It was caused due to severe shortage of power, said officials adding that the Railways has been forced to prioritise the movement of coal rakes over passenger services.

Prioritizing Maintenance and Construction Work 

In the next few years, the national transporter is on its way to deliver 58 super critical and 68 critical projects worth more than Rs 1,15,000 crore. 

So, the maintenance as well as construction work is also being carried out as a priority across its network.

It appears that this process has critically affected the movement of passenger trains across the country, especially during the peak summer months.

Canceled Trains During January to May

Before this, the Railways cancelled 3,395 services of mail/express trains, while 3,600 passenger train services were cancelled during the same period due to maintenance reasons or for construction works in January to May, as per the RTI response. 

Moreover, 1,148 mail/express train services and 2,509 passenger services were cancelled due to maintenance or construction work during the peak month of May. 

During January and February, no train services were cancelled due to coal movement. 

But it appears that 880 mail/express train services and 1,054 passenger train services were cancelled due to the prioritising of coal rakes in the last three months.

Besides this, the national transporter is also struggling to provide confirmed tickets to passengers due to a shortage in trains.

This has caused a severe surge in demand for tickets over the last few years and lack of new trains.

From 2021-22, more than 1.60 crore passengers who had bought tickets could not travel because they were being wait-listed, indicating a shortage of trains on busy routes, as per the official figures. 

But it has some upside too as the Railways has in fact recorded its best-ever monthly freight loading of 131.6 million tonnes (MT) in May 2022 due to the prioritising of coal rakes. 

Besides this, the Railways has introduced around 800 new trains in the last six years since the Railway Budget was merged with the General Budget in 2016 considering the demand for more trains from passengers. 

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