Passengers on trains originating from, arriving at, or passing through Bihar stations face the maximum average delays, while those from Gujarat face the least delays, claims a study by an online travel portal. Three states – Uttarakhand, Bihar and Kerala – show a double digit percentage increase in train delays consecutively over the last two years, according to the study, conducted through crowd sourcing by the portal RailYatri which claims to have 10 million monthly active users. On an average, trains for Bihar had a delay of 104 minutes in 2017, 93 minutes in 2016 and 80 minutes in 2015, taking the percentage increase in delays over the last three years to 30 per cent. “At the current rate of increase, it is well possible that the average delay at its stations may cross two hours in few years,” the report stated.
Apart from Bihar, the top five states with maximum train delays in 2017 are Uttar Pradesh with an average delay of 95 minutes, Punjab with 67 minutes, Goa with 64 minutes, and Assam with 62 minutes. The national train delay index for 2017 stands at 53 minutes. Delhi has shown the second lowest rate of increase in train delays – six per cent in three years with an average delay of 27 minutes in 2017. “Just like the rising pollution level, train delays in India too need urgent attention as being on-time has a definite value for every traveller, Manish Rathi, CEO and Co-founder of RailYatri, said.
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“With good roads and better infrastructure, the discerning traveller wants value for both money and time, thus train delays if not contained might lead him to choose other modes of transport,” he said. Gujarat has emerged as the best state with an average delay of 24 minutes in 2017, followed by Tamil Nadu with a 24-minute average delay and Karnataka with an average delay of 31 minutes. The study has also said that in terms of delays, August is the best month for travel on Indian Railways, when the study found least delays.