GUWAHATI, Aug 29 - Goods train services between the Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) zone and rest of the country resumed today after a gap of 16 days, while passenger train services are expected to restart from September 3.
Meanwhile, NFR has suffered commercial losses to the tune of over Rs 74 crore due to disruption of train services from and to this region following heavy floods in eastern Bihar. Train services had stopped since August 13.
NFR Chief Public Relations Officer (CPRO) Pranav Jyoti Sharma said the flood-damaged portion of track on the Up line along with the bridge No. 133 between Sudhani and Telta stations in Bihar was certified fit by the engineering department of NFR today.
�The first goods train left Sudhani station at 1:50 pm and arrived at Telta at 2:25 pm. It passed over that section safely. The portion has been certified fit up to a maximum speed of 10 km per hour. With this goods service between the NFR zone and rest of the country has resumed. The portion of repaired track will be kept under very close observation under the passage of goods trains and movement of passenger trains will be commenced from September 3,� Sharma said.
He added that with the movement of goods trains the flow of incoming essential commodities to the northeastern states will be restored.
�The speed restrictions will continue and all trains in the affected section will ply at restricted speed till such time that permanent repairs are carried out. Very extensive damage was caused in the vicinity of bridge No. 133 with scouring to a depth of 12 to 15 metre and extent of 70 metre in the approach of the bridge,� he said.
Trains will run on a single track in the Sudhani-Telta section, till the Down line is also certified as fit.
The floods earlier this month led to large scale damage in tracks and other railway infrastructure at various places across Bihar. So services in Bihar and West Bengal falling under Katihar and Alipurduar divisions of NFR had to be suspended.
This also resulted in severing of the rail link between NFR zone, which includes all the northeastern states as well as parts of Bihar and West Bengal, and the rest of the country.
Sharma said that NFR has suffered commercial loss to the tune of Rs 74.04 crore in the period from August 13 to August 28. �This is apart from the amount which has been refunded to passengers. The losses to other departments like engineering, signal and telecommunication are being assessed,� he said.
A total of 821 Mail and Express trains and 484 Passenger trains were cancelled during the period.
NFR has so far incurred a total loss of Rs 47.53 crore in PRS (passenger reservation system) earnings and Rs 5.30 crore from non-PRS earnings. In addition, the loss from the ticket checking segment has been estimated at Rs 1.44 crore.
So far, the loss in goods traffic has been Rs 16.26 crore, while Rs 3.51 crore has been lost in parcel service.
During the last 16 days 4,02,653 PRS berths and 11,27,277 non-PRS berths have been affected due to cancellations.