Last week, you know, we travelled from the City of Temples to the Pink City! And the means of transport was our Indian Railways!
We all know that the IR has done exceptionally well for the country…be it employment to over a million people, a huge fleet of trains, coverage of almost all destinations in the country, connectivity like never before, modernization of services (bookings and reservations) etc.
As kids, travelling in trains was some fun, an activity we looked forward to!
But now, its an unpleasant, unhygienic and unhealthy journey!
Because when it comes to cleanliness in our trains…. reams of pages, rather books can be written on that!
The bed rolls are terribly dirty. This time, I forgot to carry our own sheets and thus had no option but to use the ones provided by the Railways (coz the coach was toooooo cold)! And were they dirty??…. They were very very dirty!
One can get an asthma attack on even bringing the blankets near one’s nose! The toilets stink just after a few stations!(after the start of the journey, I mean!)
On seeing the state of our sheets, I asked the attendant to replace it with the clean ones! And he pointed to a heap of sheets lying near the toilet, and said something to the effect of, “take your pick”! Disgusted, I asked him to give me the Complaint Register. Curtly, he pointed towards the approaching TTE.
When I asked the TTE for the Complaint Register, very sweetly, he asks about the issue. When I showed him our sheets, he rebuked the attendant and the next moment, he gets clean sheets for us! And soon everybody started exchanging their sheets!
I mean, is this done?? We pay quite a lot for these services, and this is what we get…sheets used by don’t how many people before you and blankets which can make you sick, the toilets which can make you throw up and food….I better not say anything more, coz it would just get gross!
If the services in AC coaches is so pathetic, what would be the state of affairs in the general coaches and passenger trains!
Last time, I had seen people stuffing their dirty shoes and slippers in the side basket!(I am not getting the right word…where one can keep their books, magazines, specs etc…see the pic!) And next time, you will be keeping your dear books and specs and may be even a napkin in that! EEEks!!
Self Discipline on our part and competent and effective administration by the Indian Railways should do the trick…or else we will call Indian Railways as “Its Repulsive”!