Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The Railways responds - and How!

That was the letter I got today from the Railways in response to my complaint - that made me, for once, think things weren't all that bad in the country after all! Munnabhai had just been awarded with the sentence and here is Railways responding to my complaint (Read the previous post: "Derailed by Railways!" at http://clearway.blogspot.com/2007/07/derailed-by-railways.html . And as in most cases of unfounded mirth, my joy was short-lived as well!

1. My Complaint was dated: 17 July 2007
The Acknowledgement was dated: 20 July 2007
Acknowledgement was signed on: 25 July 2007.
Why would it take FIVE days for a simple signature on an Acknowledgement letter to a complaint?
2. The Acknowledgement was signed by one Mr B Nageswara Rao, Joint Director, Public Grievences Cell.
Why would an Acknowledgement to a complaint wait for a signature from the Joint Director? Should an acknowledgement require a signature at all? Could a Receiving Clerk not dispatch the letter?
3. The Subject Line of the Letter reads: Complaint against TTE and other matters
Excuse me? Was my complaint against the TTE and "Other matters"? It was no ordinary matter that a train ran without water in its compartments, that it was actually supposed to be going for the repair yard and was never meant to carry passengers, that there were only two TTE's for the train while there were supposed to be 1 per every two compartments, that we raised the water issue at a Railway Station with the Station Master and he refused to act, that the Emergency Chains in the chain did not work!
My complaint was against Criminal Negligence of Responsibility that was capable of causing fatal damage to passengers!
And now, my complaint includes: Gross neglect shown by Mr B Nageshwara Rao, Joint Director, Public Grievences Cell, Southern Railways! My complaint was illustrative with photographs and with details. To sign on a letter mechanically without realising the seriousness of the issues in the relevant complaint is not what a Joint Director is in his seat for!
The issue has already been taken up for action. You may keep a track of events at http://www.orkut.com/CommMsgs.aspx?cmm=32867446&tid=2543872394603724491&start=1

Monday, July 16, 2007

Derailed by Railways!

Passengers taken for a ride in a Train in Tamil Nadu; sub-standard services touch a new low in customer service.

Train No. 2690
Train Name: Nagerkovil - Chennai Special Train (Tamil Nadu)
Date of Journey: 15th July/ 16th July 2007

1. No Water Supply in many compartments all through the journey
2. No tap in the wash-basin

3. A cut, hanging pipe in the toilet

4. Poorly maintained, stinking toilets below basic standards of service

Frustrated passengers raise the issue with the TTR - get to know more of skeletons.

5. The Train is actually on the way to the Service Yard for repairs to Chennai - it was NOT supposed to be a Passenger Train.

6. The Train is labelled "Super Fast" and passengers are charged Rupee 20/- more than the regular fare.

7. Train Name/ Passenger list never displayed outside the bogies.

Passengers lodge complaint at Salem with the Station Master; the station master is non-committal and refuses any action. Passengers decide to pull the chain and stop the train at Salem to bring the issue to the notice of the authorities.

8. Three chains pulled - one after the other. NONE OF THE EMERGENCY CHAINS WORKED!

9. The "Super Fast" train, scheduled to arrive at Chennai by 11 am, arrives at 1:40 pm - delayed by more than 2 and a half hours.
10. Formal complaints to be lodged. SIgnatures of passengers have been secured in the complaint. Complaint is to be addressed to:
A. The General Manager,
Southern Railways,
B. Chairman,
Railway Board,
New Delhi
C. Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav,
Railway Minister

Railways have been taunted as fetching increasing revenues. Where do the revenues go? How low will the Railways stoop?