Railways gear up to assist f lood victims.
T HE Indian Railways has geared up its machinery to provide all possible help to the public in the wake of the unprecedented floods in Jammu and Kashmir. Railway Minister D V Sadananda Gowda has directed officials to extend all assistance to stranded passengers and to arrange for transportation of relief materials through trains.
The Ministry of Railways has decided to transport relief materials free of charge by coaching trains to Jammu Tawi and Udhampur from any station in India. The materials will include items like food, medicines, clothes, building materials and utensils meant for free distribution among flood- effected people of Jammu and Kashmir. This arrangement will be available for 15 days till September 22.
The relief materials have to be consigned to the District Magistrate of districts on production of a certificate from the consignor that they are a gift in kind or have been purchased with funds donated by the public for flood victims and have not been paid for by the government or any of its agencies. No claim for any loss or damage to consignments carried under this arrangement will be entertained unless it is clearly proved that the loss took place due to willful negligence on the part of the railways.
Officers of Firozpur division of Northern Railway, under which falls the Railway system of Jammu and Kashmir, worked day and night to repair the badly damaged track in the Jammu- Udhampur- Katra section and ensured restoration of normal traffic on September 9. A team of senior officers has also gone to the Kashmir Valley to take stock of railway tracks there.
"A special train is also being run from Jammu Tawi to Indore via New Delhi to clear stranded passengers and extra coaches are being kept as standby for clearing passengers at Jammu Tawi and New Delhi stations according to the requirements," said Gowda.
"IRCTC, a PSU of Ministry of Railways, has so far made three lakh drinking water bottles available to the victims. In addition, 50,000 Rail Neer bottles will be sent every day to the flood- affected areas till it is needed. The supplies are being sent mostly through air force and some through trains," he added.
The Delhi division of Northern Railway has made special arrangements for people being evacuated from floodhit areas. Under this plan, exclusive waiting rooms have been earmarked for their use at New Delhi station.
In case of onward journeys from New Delhi and any other assistance, passengers can contact the station manager at his phone no - 9717648892 and deputy station manager on - 9717631960.
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