Assam: 12 Trains remain cancelled since March 2020, ARPA demands resumption

More short-distance trains will be run by NF Railway.
The Assam Rail Passengers’ Association (ARPA) has expressed concern about the state’s cancellation of 12 train services.  The majority of trains have been cancelled since the country was placed on lockdown in March 2020 due to the pandemic.
Although the railway authorities resumed operations after the lockdown was lifted during the first and second waves of the pandemic, most trains in Assam remain cancelled, causing passengers to face difficulties while commuting.
The ARPA claimed that since the imposition of the lockdown in March 2020, services of 12 local trains, including the Dibrugarh-Guwahati Shatabdi, have been suspended.

“Although services of some local trains have been resumed, 12 trains were secretly cancelled from Assam in the guise of lockdown,” ARPA general secretary Dipankar Sarma said in a statement.

The trains which remain cancelled in Assam are–

1. 1207 Dibrugarh Shatabdi

2. 15942 Jhajha Express

3. 12525 Kolkata Superfast

4. 15617 Mariani Intercity

5. 1571 Kamakhya Intercity

.6. 15911 Naharlagun Intercity

7. 15605 Furkating Intercity

8. 55903 Mariani Passenger

9. 65911 Dangori passenger

10. 5565 Silchar Passenger

11. 55605 Murkongselek Passenger

12. 55618 New Bongaigaon Passenger

It has been alleged by ARPA that these 12 trains have been removed from Assam without any notification. The rail passengers’ body has urged NF Railway, Assam Government as well as the Centre to immediately resume the services of the following five trains.

1. Guwahati-Rangiya-New Bangaigaon Passenger (No. 55617)

2. Alipurduar-Rangiya-Kamakhya Intercity (No. 1581)

3. Dibrugarh-Lakhimpur-Kolkata Superfast (No. 12525)

4. Dibrugarh-Lamding-Guwahati Shatabdi (No. 1206)

5. Dibrugarh-Makum-Dangri Passenger (No. 65911)

Earlier, Rajya Sabha MP Ajit Kumar Bhuyan demanded that local train services be restored in the state.

“Thousands of people relying on local train services are suffering as a result of the suspension since the lockdown was announced,” he said.

Local train services have resumed in several states, but not in Assam. It has impacted the lives of ordinary people. And the economically disadvantaged are the hardest hit.”

Bhuyan wrote a letter to the Railways Minister in December 2020. He had previously raised the issue in Parliament, but no action was taken to address the people’s concerns.

Notably, the majority of passengers who are government employees commute by train on a daily basis, and with the cancellation of these trains, they are forced to choose between buses or their own vehicles, both of which are more expensive than the train. Bus fares have also been raised, causing many passengers to struggle because they cannot afford to travel by bus on a daily basis.

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