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Railways staff union to protest hike in train fare

Kolkata: Railway employees' union has decided to protest against hike in the price of long and short distance passenger train tickets.

"There is no mention of increased train fare (special trains) in the Railway budget. Secretly, Railway administration has increased the fare for both short distance and long distance trains.

"We will conduct a meeting with different union members and fix the date of our protest," said Tanmay Roy, Division Secretary of All India Loco Running Staff Association (AILRSA).

He reiterated that fare of short-distance passenger trains has been increased from Rs 10 to Rs 30 for 45 km. Passengers travelling between 45 km and 65 km are paying Rs 30 to 35 extra. In case of long-distance trains, the fare has been hiked by 40 per cent.

"Indian Railways said the fare has been hiked to prevent crowding inside the train due to COVID-19 pandemic," pointed out Roy.

Indian Railways has decided to allow private passenger train operators to run 151 trains on 109 routes. It has set a timeline for trains running with the help of the private sector. The first set of private trains will arrive in 2023.

Meanwhile, train services were disrupted along the Howrah-Bardhaman chord line of ER's Howrah Division for over 90 minutes on Friday.

The disruption started at 9.18 am when a rear pantograph of 36828 Bardhaman-Howrah EMU local broke at Chandanpur station, snapping overhead wire. As a result, power went off in the reversible line from 9.26 am. The movement of down direction trains was stopped.

Power supply in the overhead wire was restored around 11 am.

Eight EMU locals had to be cancelled, six EMU locals and two mail/express trains were delayed and four mail/express trains were diverted.

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