RANGIYA, July 11 � The Assam Rail Passengers Association (ARPA), expressing its concern for the fellow passengers of the State and in pursuance of the assurance given by the then NFRailway general manager and the chief operating manager to a team of delegates led by MP Kumar Dipak Das, has urged the NFRailway authority to introduce three-four short-distance passenger trains, preferably DEMU type, for the benefit of people.
In a memorandum submitted to the present general manager, it pleaded the authority as to arrange for a few more such trains meant for short distance passengers like students, patients, small businessmen, vendors, office goers and others, the number of which are gradually increasing keeping in view the economy and safety of a train journey. A large section of these people would be highly benefitted if the authority initiates its already assured measures in this regard. Presently the frequent traffic jams, dilapidated surface of NH road stretches etc; are some of the main factors due to which journey by trains gaining popularity among the users among which the maximum number is of the Monthly Season Ticket (MST) holders.
ARPA stated further that rapid urbanization process throughout the country, the number of daily travellers to Guwahati city from its suburbs like Barpeta road, Sarupeta, Pathsala, Tihu, Nalbari, Rangiya, Kendukona, Goreswar, Tangla etc; are increasing day by day. It may be mentioned that even after 100 long years since the laying of railway line through the State by erstwhile railway engineer Karnal Singh, there was only a short distance commuter train (train no-701) under Rangiya division running between New Bongaigaon and Guwahati via Rangiya since 1992. Regular users had to depend on its service to ply to Guwahati in the morning session for their daily affairs. Therefore, the introduction of another few such short distance trains from routes like New Bongaigaon/ Barpeta Road via Rangiya to and beyond Guwahati in order to avoid congestion in Guwahati station, is a must, the ARPA urged.
The ARPA while demanding introduction of another commuter train in BG 1 section, said while the passengers were happy to have benefited with the service of 711/712 passenger trains ARPA said, that the trains which are being converted to Intercity Express renumbering as 5769/5770 and thereby withdrawing some of the important stoppages of 711/712 trains has affected the users of these places.
In such a situation, until a new service is arranged for the users especially travelling from the proposed withdrawn stoppages, the highly utilised existing trains should not be converted into intercity ones, general secretary Dipankar Sarma of ARPA said. He mentioned that the 711/712 trains were a dream, come true of the locals people of Assam and the people of North Bengal had no role in this connection. The ARPA further stated that BG-I section is now a 100 years old one, the low number of passenger trains running in this section reflects the almost total ignorance of local sentiments. Although several long/short distance trains are running through, on the other hand locals are always deprived and need more services. ARPA urged the NFR authority to look into the aspect of diversion of Rajdhani Express till the track is doubled. The new path may be utilised for the purpose of local trains, it urged pleading the authority to realise the hardships of the people and try to ameliorate them.