NAGPUR: ‘Service with Smile’ is the motto of Indian Railways but hundreds of passengers travelling in Nagpur division of Central Railway are facing humiliation due to bad behaviour of employees themselves.
Poor administration at Nagpur station is causing hardship to the passengers. Citing bad behaviour of the railway staff at the eastern side of the station, RTI activist Avinash Prabhune, in a letter to divisional railway manager (DRM) Brijesh Dixit has said indifferent and adamant self-style working by the staff is causing harassment to the passengers.
“On Friday when I parked my two-wheeler at the stand, the contractor’s men were reluctant to return Rs 5 to me when I paid him a Rs 10 note. This was despite the fact that the employee at the parking lot had loose change,” said Prabhune.
“My request to return the Rs 5 fell on deaf ears of the employee. He was rough and insisted to arrange for change. It is felt that staff is used to harass passengers for loose change. Passengers who are in a hurry are compelled to pay Rs 10,” Prabhune said.
If this was not enough, when Prabhune reached counter number 9 for buying a platform ticket, he offered the clerk Rs 10 currency note. “The clerk, instead of returning Rs 5, gave me two platform tickets and gave an idea to sell one ticket to someone. I refused as I am not supposed to sell tickets outside railway counter but he was extremely adamant and did not consider my request,” said Prabhune.
The RTI activist alleged that staff is using such tactics to harass passengers. They compel passengers to pay Rs 10. Those in a hurry even pay. When Prabhune wanted to lodge protest, neither the complaint book nor the supervisor was available.
Prabhune and his family on November 9, had another bad experience when they noticed that escalator was out of service. The escalator is suppose to remain open for at least 12 hours. On November 9, Prabhune’s wife and a distant relative were among a dozen passengers who were denied access to the escalator.
“We had to climb up the haphazard stairs. Shockingly, we saw that a section of passengers with heavy luggage weighing around 60 kg were allowed to use the escalator at the same time,” alleged Atusha Khanzode who was travelling to Kolhapur.
Such discriminatory use of powers controlling the system needs to be curtailed. Besides, the bag scanning machine was also out of order. Security at the station is being compromised due to such failures, said Khanzode.
“These are small issues but carry bad impression about Nagpur station and Indian Railways,” said Prabhune.