Yesterday, I met a ticket inspector inside my coach who was rather revolted for a railway employee.
After he checked my tickets, I mentioned of the lack of cleanliness, broken electrical switches, fans, wires and the nearly defunct washrooms.
I have spoken to many railway professionals but never met anyone quite as agitated as him.
Here’s What He Said
The East Coast Railway runs “condemned” coaches along important routes in Odisha, mostly in the Puri-BBSR-Bolangir-Sambalpur-Rourkela routes. These coaches are technically so faulty that they can catch fire anytime and threaten lives of the passengers.
Any other state, passengers would have taken matter into their hands or staged agitations forcing the authorities to stop putting passengers’ lives at risk. Why this is not happening here is beyond me.
Many passengers that travel in theses are actually influential and have the required political wherewithal to push the authorities, but they turn a blind eye. I have personally spoken to them about the issue but they usually keep mum. I have registered complaints on behalf of the passengers but I’m sure those written complaints have been consigned to trashcan.
There is no unity among the Odia people – they tend to take things easy and promptly move on to the next thing on their schedule, without regret or revolt.
He suggested passengers can pull the chain at important stations and collectively demand an answer from the station master and do this on a regular basis until the authorities listen to their demand.
I got down from the coach but his narrative still lingered in my mind.
What do you think of his narrative?