Train delays to cost officials promotions

In 2017-2018 fiscal, 30% trains were running late. PTI

In what should come as a relief to railway passengers frustrated by delays in services, trains are now likely to run on time as any deviation from schedule will cost officials of the national transporter their promotions.

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has warned heads of zonal railways that delays in train services will defer their appraisal proportionately, giving them a month to improve punctuality.

During an internal meeting last week, Goyal lashed out at zonal general managers and said they cannot hide behind the pretext of maintenance work to explain delays in train services, said a senior railway ministry source.

In 2017-2018 fiscal, 30% trains were running late on the railway network, with the numbers failing to pick up even during the holiday season this summer.

The General Manager (GM) of Northern Railway bore the brunt of Goyal's wrath, with the region recording an abysmal 49.59% punctuality performance till May 29, a 32.74% dip compared to the same period last year.

"While the minister has taken a lot of flak for the delays, he knew it was a price he had to pay for the large-scale renewal of tracks. However, the punctuality figures are way worse than what we had expected. Clearly, the zones are using maintenance work as an excuse to hide their inefficiency," the source said.

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