Date of Journey : 28th Feb, 2016 , Atarra to Jhansi, UP Sampark Kranti Express
Unusually,the train arrived at Atarra station just on time. I had to struggle to get into a sleeper coach. Sleeper coaches should only be occupied by passengers who have reserved the seats with confirmed tickets. Passengers with waiting list (WL) tickets are not permitted to board the train.
Everything was just USUAL. The coach was filled with people who either had general coach tickets and people who have waiting list tickets. 12-16 people were occupying the 8 seater compartments. There were 3 times more people in the coach than expected.
Everybody was sitting silently , adjusting (‘Jugaad kar ke seat ka intezaam ho gaya tha’). I saw all this and could not sit silently. I sent many tweets to Mr.Prabhu,RailMinCare, DRMDelhi and informed them about the situation.
The train had left Banda station.I asked my brother to file a complaint on 182. He did and thats when the UNUSUAL things started.
The RPF showed up at the Mahoba station. One policeman came to my seat and asked, who filed the complaint? I raised my hand and then the conversations started.
He asked me what was the problem. I told him 16 people are occupying the compartment of 8 people. He made a mockery out of it as if trying to announce to the whole compartment. He asked me to come out of the train.
There were 5-6 policemen on the mahoba station waiting to address the issue. I met them. One of the heavy bulky guy , who seemed to be the leader started asking me questions and this conversation made me think, are we there yet?
The Leader : Kya problem hai?
I: 8 log ke compartment me 16 log baithe hai. Poore coach me bina reservation ticket ke log baithe hain.
The Leader : Aap karte kya ho? Problem kya hai? Aapko aapki seat mili ke nahi?
I: Me software engineer hun. Mere ko seat mili but meri birth(supposed to be occupied by 3 people) pe 5 log baithe hai.
The Leader: *laughs loudly* ye problem hamari nahi hai. TTE se baat kariye. He asked for the TTE.
*One guy went to check for the TTE and came back with the response ‘The train is unmanned’*
I: Dekhiye, ab ye kiski problem hai? TTE he nahi he train me 4 ghante se?
The Leader: Ye railways ke problem hai. Railways itne TTE he hire nahi karti he ke har train me TTE lagaya jaye.
The Leader: Ye saare hindustan ke problem hai. Koi 5 bacche paida karta he koi 10. Railways ko waiting ticket he nahi bechna chahiye.
I: Waiting ticket pe travel karna allowed nahi he. Ye kaun check karega?
The Leader: Jab draupadi ( reference – train) ka cheer haran hua tha,toh sab ( He and his company) khade dekh rahe the. Me 20 saal se dekh raha hun, India pehle bhi aise he tha , aaj bhi aise he hai and aise he rahega. Ye Modi aur Prabhu kuch nahi kar sakte. Koi kuch nahi kar sakta is desh ka.
I: Aap aaye, acha laga. Dheeme dheeme he ye desh badlega. Dhanyawaad.
*And I left, furious*
We have heard a lot of good stories about Mr. Prabhu’s customer sensitization campaigns but this is really a shocking one. The question is , how will we change the system when we have such blood sucking, unmotivated officials in our system? There has certainly been great improvement in the Indian Railways, thanks to Mr.Prabhu and Mr.Modi , but are we there yet?