GENERAL MANAGER (IN-CHARGE)
INDEPENDENCE DAY MESSAGE-2022
Dear Members of the Railway Parivar,
I extend a warm welcome to you all on this momentous occasion of Independent India completing 75 years of freedom and marking the culmination of “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” celebrations. To mark this historic occasion, as per the clarion call given by our Hon’ble Prime Minister, the whole nation has been fervently celebrating the ideals of our freedom struggle and freedom fighters whose bravery continues to inspire generations of Indians.
Indian Railways has been an integral part of our freedom struggle – connecting patriots across regions socially, culturally, intellectually and politically. To commemorate the glorious history of its people, culture and achievements, Indian Railways has been enthusiastically participating in the unique initiative of “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” to spread the message across the length and breadth of the nation.
To honour the legacy of our freedom struggle and spread the happiness of “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” across the nation, Indian Railways undertook a host of activities. 75 iconic Railway Stations and 27 important trains were identified to pay our tribute to our freedom fighters and remember the ideals which galvanized the national movement. South Central Railway was fortunate to have four of these iconic stations and one train over its rail network. We took this opportunity to not only recollect the ideals which inspired a host of generations but also pay our respect by honouring our freedom fighters and their families. Our trains and locomotives proudly displayed Tricolour to rekindle the patriotic fervor among all citizens and regions that our wheels travelled. Band shows were conducted across important stations and towns which saw spontaneous participation from all public across regions. Bike Rallies were conducted to take the message to the doorstep of all our citizens. Students across age groups keenly participated in the initiatives through their colorful paintings, quiz and essay participation, elocutions among others. The high point of these activities has undoubtedly been the never-seen before occasion of the National Tiranga proudly unfurling across each household of Indians.
It is indeed a privilege to address you on such a historic occasion. I take this opportunity to also reflect on the outstanding performance that the Zone continues to display, due to its dedicated and committed workforce. I would like to share with you all that South Central Railway continues to hold pride of place nationally, crossing significant milestones in its path of progress. As you are aware, our Railway has been awarded with 5 All Indian Performance Efficiency Shields – the highest across Indian Railways – for exceptional performance displayed during the last year. These include Security, Stores, Civil Engineering, Medical and Civil Engineering (Construction) Shields.
The confident strides continue in the current fiscal, with the Zone displaying all-round performance during the first four months of the current financial year. SCR’s gross originating revenue clocked Rs. 5909 crores during April – July 2022, surpassing the last year’s achievement by 43 %. This has been the result of the robust growth in both Freight and Passenger segment. The Zone has recorded originating freight loading of 43.5 Million tonnes during April – July 2022 generating Rs 4048 Crores in freight revenue, a significant increase of 20 % over the last year. Team SCR has taken several proactive steps to not only strengthen our existing freight basket but also diversify into new streams of traffic. Notable initiatives in the first four months of the current financial year have been starting freight operations in the Bhadrachalam – Sattupalle, Manoharabad – Gajwel and Medak – Akanapet New Railway Lines. On passenger front, the Zone has carried 78 Million passengers generating the revenue of Rs 1617 Crores during the first four months of current financial year, registering a growth of 175 % in Originating Passenger revenue. In fact, the current year saw SCR registering its best ever monthly Originating passenger and freight revenue in the month of May, 2022.
The Zone has been giving special focus towards creation of infrastructure to extend its rail network. Towards this objective, the Zone has given major thrust towards completion of last mile projects which led to the completion of New Line project between Bhadrachalam – Sattupalli and Vijayawada - Gudivada - Machilipatnam; Nidadavolu - Narsapur; Gudivada - Bhimavaram double line project. In addition, third line works have also been completed between Bisugirsharif and Uppal. Towards capacity enhancement, a pit line has been commissioned at Kazipet station enabling the maintenance of originating train services. Mission electrification has seen rapid strides with 96 Rkm being electrified in the current fiscal, back on the best-ever annual electrification achieved in the last financial year. This has made our Guntakal Division as fully electrified division.
Safety is the overriding priority in all aspects of our working. To strengthen the safety of our train operations, Kavach – IR’s indigenous Automatic Train Protection System – has been extended to 1,455 kms of SCR rail network. SCR continues to lead Indian Railways in carrying out machines-based track maintenance. During April – July 2022, to strengthen the safety of our tracks, maintenance works were carried across 5200 Kms and 1789 points. 19 Manned Level Crossings have also been eliminated during this financial year for enhancing safety of both road and rail users. Two LC gates have been interlocked this year to enhance safety of train operations.
Security is another thrust area of SCR, with several steps being taken to ensure safety and security of rail passengers. CCTV surveillance system has been installed at 58 stations. Parcel scanner has been set up in PPP mode at Hyderabad railway station as a pilot project. Further, another major step has been taken recently by awarding work to commission Video Surveillance Systems across 76 of our railway stations under Nirbhaya Fund. Our Security personnel have been taking several initiatives like Operation Meri Saheli, Operation Mahila Surkasha, Operation Narcos and Child Help Line among others to strengthen security for the rail passengers.
To provide comfortable, timely and convenient travel, the Zone has operated 719 special trains to cater the needs of travelling public. 5385 Extra coaches of different classes have been augmented to the regular trains to provide additional travel.The Zone has been continuously modernizing its coaching fleet to provide modern travel experience to its customers. Till date, 57 rakes have been inducted with latest LHB coaches providing enhanced features and travel options across 38 pairs of Express for train travelers. 2 Lifts have been commissioned at 2 stations for the convenience of passengers.
In order to provide opportunities to local artisans and handicrafts under “One station One Product” (OSOP) policy, SCR has identified products to sell at 474 stations. At present, OSOP stalls are functioning at 47 stations across the Zone.
E-auction facility for commercial contracts has been introduced recently, it evoked huge response and 54 contracts worth Rs 77 Crores have been awarded across the Zone.
South Central Railway has always been on forefront in implementation of energy conservation measures. Installing Solar panels to harness natural power, providing energy efficient electrical equipments and implementing other energy saving initiatives have been taken up on a massive scale. This has resulted in the Zone consistently achieving both National and State Level Awards for energy-efficient measures and our units getting green ratings. The latest additions to this list have been Kacheguda station, Lingampalli station and Hyderabad Bhavan which have been adjudged as Energy Efficient Units by Confederation of Indian Industry. Setting up of Water Recycling, Effluent Treatment, and Sewage Treatment plants at suitable locations for conserving water has received Green ratings for various units. As on date, 23 units of SCR have been awarded Green-Co Certification from CII-IGBC.
SCR has been a pioneer in Material Management across Indian Railways. The Zone has been vigorously implementing ‘Mission Zero Scrap’ across all its depots. Till now, 4 Divisions, 6 Loco Sheds and 7 units of workshops of the Zone have been declared as Scrap Free. During the current financial year, SCR has earned staggering Rs. 100 crore revenue through scrap sales in just 103 days, which is almost double than the last year.
I am proud of the positive work environment prevailing across the Zone and the constructive role played by Organised Unions in attaining it. SCR is committed to the employees’ welfare and has taken several steps in this regard. Initiatives like Hospital Management Information System (HMIS), UMID Cards, etc have been introduced to provide easy access to best healthcare facilities to our employees, pensioners and their families. The role played by the SCR Women’s Welfare Organisation in undertaking various welfare-centric activities amongst the Railway families and outside society is highly commendable.
The excellent work being done by our Civil Defence and Scouts & Guides personnel of SCR came to the fore when this year’s Regional Level Yoga Fest was successfully conducted by our team in Secunderabad. On the Art and Cultural front, SCR is recognised by its Lalitha Kala Samithi, which is one of the most active organisations in the region. The SCR Sports Association has always been proactive in encouraging the sports talent and maintaining healthy practices on our system resulting in the Zone achieving winners’ Cup in both Volleyball and Kabaddi this year.
The new financial year has commenced on a promising note for SCR. I am sure that this energy will continue to flow throughout the ensuing times, taking the Zone to great heights of success. Let us all remain together, work together and achieve the best together. Team efforts will keep SCR’s flag flying high.