Heavy rush for seats at Dimapur rly stn

Heavy rush for seats at Dimapur rly stn
Usual scene at Dimapur railway station where several hundred passengers rush for seats on Sunday. (NP)
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, SEP 29 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 9/29/2019 11:19:53 AM IST

In sharp contrast to the publicity campaign highlighting the big leap in achievements made by the Indian Railways as seen shown in the ‘Jumbotron’ placed at the entrance of the Dimapur railway station; the same cannot said be on the ground at Dimapur Railway station.

What has been witnessed during the past few years was that while most stoppage stations between Dimapur to Guwahati have witnessed major developments, it has escaped Dimapur railway station.

The condition in and around the Dimapur railway station in deteriorating with the road being plagued with potholes. When it rains, water greets the incoming and outgoing passengers at the entrance.

A parking fee of Rs.20 is charged per vehicle by a leassee in the area which has not been maintained for ages.  However, the most important factor that has been long neglected at the cost of passengers is regarding availability of seats in trains. Dimapur happens to be the second highest revenue earner for the Northeast Frontier Railways(NFR) but everyday thousands of passengers are left to contend with hardly a few hundred seats made available.

This was witnessed by this Reporter on Sunday when passengers made headlong rush for seats for the Avadh Assam from Dibrugarh to Lalgargh which halts briefly at Dimapur around 4 p.m. everyday. 

This Reporter met with the Chief Ticket Supervisor(CTS) at the Dimapur Railway Station to enquire on why the NFR has yet to respond to several demands for increase in seat quotas. The CTS Piyutosh Dey said that seats are made available at the Computerized Passenger Reservation Counter in Dimapur for passengers travelling from Dimapur on trains either passing through or originating from Dimapur. 

Dey revealed that passengers travelling to South India continue to struggle in getting their tickets confirmed and admitted that there was an urgent need for additional trains to the South.  Dey said that currently there are only two trains for southbound passengers for both Assam and Nagaland- Bangalore Express ( Dibrugrah to Bangalore) on Fridays and the Vivek Express ( Dibrugarh to Kanyakumari) on Sundays.  He also lamented that the two weekly southward bound trains are nadequate to accommodate the ever increasing number of passengers travelling to south India. To get tickets to go to the southern part, he said tickets have to be booked at least three months in advance.  Apart from the two mentioned trains, majority of passengers of Dimapur take the following four daily trains: Rajdhani Express (Dimapur to New Delhi), Avadh Assam Express, and the two trains originating at Dimapur and halting at Guwahati- Nagaland Express and BG Express. 

The quota (clubbed with neighbouring stations) for the four daily trains are shown in the table below. The quota varies depending on the demand. 

TRAINs 1 AC 2AC 3AC Sleeper  

Rajdhani Express 4 50 127 NA

Nagaland Express NA 32 40 196

BG Express NA 28 20 165

Avadh Assam Express (Number varies) 

Apart from the four daily trains, the other trains are Jan Shatabi Express ( Guwahati to Jorhat) running on all days of the week except Sundays and the Shatabdi Express ( Guwahati to Dibrugarh) running thrice a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday (for trains originating from Dibrugarh).
Jan Shatabdi has 25 A/C chair seats and 197 general seats allotted for passengers from Dimapur (clubbed with neighbouring stations at Furkating and Diphu) while there are 156 seats for A/C chair seats for Shatabdi Express. 
The above clearly indicates that seats available are too few and far between and thereby hangs the tale of neglect of Dimapur. 
In July this year, the Railway Contractor Union of Nagaland (RCUN) had also submitted a representation to divisional railway manager (DRM) of NFR, Lumding calling for a major overhaul in the Dimapur and its immediate surroundings to make it par with the other railway stations in the country. 
Again in June this year, the Tinsukia railway station has made headlines for its “airport” like facilities after a makeover which included air-conditioned paid executive lounge, made at par with those at airports. There is also a separate first-class waiting hall for ladies along with attached modern cubical washrooms. 
However, Dimapur instead of growing is being stagnated with neglect despite the fact that it deserves to be treated as the next best after Guwahati in order of merit for earning a high revenue. 

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