Northern Railway transports 92 lakh tonne commodities
New Delhi: As the lockdown came into effect, all passenger train operations were stalled from midnight of March 22. Focus now shifted to the goods trains to maintain a steady supply of commodities which primarily included food grains to feed 80 crore PDS beneficiaries in the country.
Rajiv Chaudhry, General Manager Northern & North Central Railways said that the Northern Railway has been running 5,000 tonne jumbo trains from its various freight loading terminals spread across Punjab and Haryana. This is to maintain a steady supply chain to feed 80 crore NFSA beneficiaries through continuous evacuation of mainly food grains and sugar from the northern states to different regions of the country.
A total of 188 long haul 5,000 tonne jumbo "Annapurna" trains have been dispatched to 13 states from April 1 to June 8 this year, with highest number to Karnataka- 45.5, Bihar- 38.5 and Maharashtra-34. "Antodaya" trains are time-tabled goods trains for carrying food grain. 17 such trains were run by Northern Railway during the 70-day period. Also a new closed circuit rake named "Amba" was introduced. 11 such close circuit jumbo, covered wagon rake formations were dispatched to different destinations during the period. Closed circuits ensure timely availability of rakes for loading and the periodic repair/overhauling schedules of the wagons is easily maintained.