Call to Liberate Mumbai Trains from Rail Ministry

Source:  www.newindianexpress.com

MUMBAI: Every year the maximum city sees a repeat of an equivalent of a Bhopal gas tragedy.

A study by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) has found that around 3,500 commuters of  local trains die in accidents every year. And the number of fatalities is nine times more than the deaths caused by terror strikes across the country.

ORF, a think tank headed by former BJP ideologue Sudheendra Kulkarni, on Tuesday released its report titled ‘Killer Tracks’. Author of the report, Dhaval Desai, a senior researcher at ORF, gathered information on the number of casualties in the accidents from the Railways’ official data bank. He has found that most of the victims were sole bread winners for their families. Besides, it had come to light that majority of the victims died after falling off a crowded train.

But for infusion of funds for mega projects, the Railway Ministry has ignored the local train network, the report concluded. In his report, Desai has sought to liberate Mumbai local trains from the control of Railway Ministry. “There is a need to establish an autonomous corporation– Mumbai Metropolitan Region Railway Corporation– to implement all the long-term measures necessary to achieve the goal of zero deaths,” Desai said. He alleged that the Railway Ministry has always been indifferent to the problems of safety on local trains. More info

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