The railways’ on-time performance has steadily declined since 2013-14 with 78 per cent of total express/mail trains till the first half of the current fiscal running as per scheduled time, according to government data.
As against 83 per cent of the mail/express trains running on time in fiscal 2013-14, the punctuality rate came down to 79 per cent in 2014-15, Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha informed Lok Sabha today.
The on-time performance of these trains till October 2015 stood at 78 per cent, the minister added.
He said the railways has taken several steps to improve punctuality rate but there is no provision for compensation for the delays in train operations.
The steps include revisiting the time-table of identified “bad” runners, sensitisation of staff involved in train operations towards importance of punctuality, prioritisation of maintenance of assets to minimise asset failure and rectifications of failures in shortest possible time besides better coordination with civil and police authorities of states to minimise delays arising out of law and order problems.
Stress on timely completion of capacity enhancement projects such as construction of additional loop lines, doubling, third line corridors automatic signalling, road under bridges and road over bridges, among others, which are already sanctioned and in progress are also some of the measures taken by the railways in this regard, Sinha said.
Sinha said that severe capacity constraints also adversely impact the punctuality of those trains running on the Delhi-Howrah-Mumbai-Chennai-Mumbai quadrilateral, adding, “high priority is being accorded to making resources available for speedy execution of capacity augmentation works.”
The consequent de-congestation of highly saturated routes will inter-alia enhance systematic capacity to run trains (with) more punctuality, Sinha added.