New Delhi: The Indian Railways today rubbished rumours on the resumption of passenger services plan post the end of the nationwide coronavirus lockdown on April 14, stating that there is no such plan as of now. The largest public sector transported had cancelled all passenger, mail and express train services from March 24 to April 14 in a bid to break the chain and stop further transmission of the novel coronavirus.
"Certain media reports have come on a post lockdown restoration plan with train details, frequency etc. It is to clarify that no such plan regarding the resumption of passenger services has been issued. All concerned would be duly informed about any further decision in this regard," informed the Ministry of Railways through a tweet.
Certain media reports have come on a post lockdown "restoration plan" with train details,frequency etc. It is to clarify that no such plan regarding the resumption of passenger services has been issued.All concerned would be duly informed about any further decision in this regard
— Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) April 4, 2020
Earlier, rumours were abuzz that the Railways has started preparation to resume all its passenger services from April 15 post the end of COVID-19 lockdown. It was also said that all railway safety personnel, running staff, guards, TTE and other officials have been told to be prepared to join their posts from April 15.
Read: COVID-19 Lockdown: Railways Extends Suspension Of Passenger Trains Till April 14
Besides, citing a railway ministry source, it was stated that after the 21-day lockdown ending on April 14, the national transporter is likely to restore 80 per cent of passenger train services including premium train services like Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duronto, Tejas and Vande Bharat trains.
Asked about whether it will ensure the safety of passengers as well as the railway staff involved in train operations, the source reportedly said that the railway is likely to conduct thermal screening of all passengers and follow all protocols as advised by the government. However, he said that no fresh orders have been issued and since cancellations were only up to April 14, "no fresh orders are required for starting the operations with effect from April 15."
The Railways had suspended the services of 13,523 trains for 21 days after the lockdown was announced by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However, freight trains and special parcel trains are in service to ensure the supply of essential items.
Also Read: Fighting COVID-19: Railways To Modify 20000 Coaches Which Can Accommodate 3.2 Lakh Isolation Beds
(With Agency Inputs)