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No final decision on resumption of services: Railways on restoration plans


Railways on Saturday said no final decision has been taken yet on the restoration of train services and that a call on it would be taken in a few days.

The statement comes amidst railway zones preparing action plans to resume services from April 15 after passenger trains remained suspended for 21 days during the lockdown in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

“Train services will have to be resumed only on specific approval of each train from Railway Board. Suggestions for phase-wise planning should be given to Railway Board,” an official said Saturday.

This decision was taken in a video conference meeting of Railway Minister Piyush Goyal with the Chairman, Railway Board on Friday, officials said.

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Trains, however, will begin operations only after receiving a green signal from the government which had formed a Group of Ministers (GoM) on the issue.

All 17 zones are preparing plans to identify trains and resume their services taking into account the availability of rakes.

Sources said the railways is likely to also conduct thermal screening on all passengers and follow all protocols as advised by the government.

Senior officials, however, said no fresh orders have been issued and since cancellations were only up to April 14 “no fresh orders required for starting with effect from April 15.” Sources said a concrete action plan will be sent to the zones later this week.

In an unprecedented move, the railways had suspended the services of 13,523 trains for 21 days after the lockdown was announced by the PM on March 24. Its freight trains, however, continued to run during this period.


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