Railways curtails service in Kangra areas, passengers in lurch

Lalit Mohan

Tribune News Service

Dharamsala, August 22

The Railways is curtailing its services on the Pathankot-Jogindernagar route, leaving many villages in Dehra with no connectivity. The villages have no road link as these fall in the Pong Dam wildlife sanctuary.

Sole link to villages

Trains from Pathankot to Jogindernagar are the only link to our village. Now, the trains, passing through our village, rarely stop here. People have to walk about 10 km to catch a bus. Vippan Kumar, Lunsu Village Pradhan

Hike in minimum fare

  • The Railways has increased the minimum fare from Rs5 to Rs30
  • The 2 trains that have been started after cancelling the service during lockdown skip many stations

Vippan Kumar Pradhan of Lunsu village said the trains from Pathankot to Jogindernagar were the only link to their village. People used to go to Kangra or even Dehra by train. Now, the trains, passing through their village, rarely stop there. People have to walk about 10 km to catch a bus. They have submitted a petition to the Railways authorities seeking stoppage of the trains at their village.

Raghav of Nandpur village in Dehra also alleged that the trains were not stopping at their village due to which the locals faced problems in reaching nearby stations for daily chores. Many people, who go for work to nearby areas, were dependent on the train service. The government should intervene, he said.

Sources here told The Tribune that at one time, seven trains used to ply on the Pathankot-Jogindernagar track daily. The track, established in 1928 by the British, was the main link to the hinterland in Kangra district. The Railways then reduced the frequency of trains to five in the last few years, citing viability issues. Last year, the train service to region was stopped due to the lockdown. Now the Railways has resumed just two trains. Even these trains skip many stations. The Railways had also increased the minimum fare from Rs 5 to Rs 30.

DRM, Railways, Ferozepore, Seema Sharma said the decision to ply trains was to be taken by the railway board. At present, just two trains were plying on the track, she said.

When asked about the complaints of people that trains were not stopping at many stations, the DRM said if people had any complaints, they should submit these and the railway board would take a decision.

Courtesy: Tribune News Service
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