SOUTHERN RAILWAY CELEBRATES 71st REPUBLIC DAY




SOUTHERN RAILWAY CELEBRATES 71st REPUBLIC DAY
Southern Railway celebrated 71st Republic Day with fanfare today (26.01.2020) at the Railway Stadium, Perambur, Chennai.  Shri John Thomas, General Manager, Southern Railway unfurled the National Flag in the presence of Shri Birendra Kumar, Principal Chief Security Commissioner, Principal Heads of Departments, other officers and staff of  Southern Railway and accepted the Guard of Honour by the RPF contingents. A colourful cultural event followed. 

During his speech, the General Manager highlighted the achievements of the zone during the current year. During the year 2019-20 (upto December 2019) Southern Railway’s gross earnings and Passenger earnings improved by 2.59% and 8.27 % respectively. Freight transportation has also grown, with Fertilizer showing an increase of 10% over last year, Petroleum, Oil and Lubricants registering an increase of 14% and movement of Automobile rakes has increased by 24%. The infrastructure facilities are being augmented. This year Southern Railway is planning to commission the third line between Guduvanchery- Singaperumal Koil (11 km.) and doubling of Mangaluru to Padil (1.93 km.), gauge conversion project of Madurai-Usilampatti (37 km.) by Jan.2020, doubling of Ambalapuzha-Haripad (18.13 km.) by Feb.2020 and 4 th line of Attipattu Pudunagar to Attipattu (1.7 km.) by March 2020, and Usilampatti to Bodinaikanur by April 2020. Also, Electrification of Cuddalore-Mayiladuthurai (74 km.) which is being undertaken by Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RVNL) and Thiruvarur to Karaikkal port (40 km.) by Railway Electrification Wing would also be commissioned by end of March, the General Manager said. Adding vision to the flagship project of Ministry of Railways, Station development works at 6 stations viz., Chennai Egmore, Madurai, Salem, Palakkad, Kottayam and Tiruchchirappalli at a total cost of 109.55 crores are in progress, the General Manager added.



The General Manager said that after eliminating Unmanned LCs totally on the Railway, the focus is now on elimination of Manned LCs. During April to Dec.19, 77 manned Level crossings were closed by constructing 14 ROBs and 49 RUBs/LUSs. Southern Railway completed interlocking of 64 LC gates, which is the highest among all zonal railways so far this year and we are targeting 3 Divisions namely Chennai, Salem and Palakkad for 100% interlocking of LC gates. Southern Railway has become one of the few Zonal Railways to have fully eliminated the legacy of Mechanical signalling system over its entire BG network, the General Manager added.
Southern Railway operated 1995 special trains and 4014 extra coaches to clear extra rush during festival/rush times creating 2,91,781 additional berths. Permanent augmentation of 70 trains with 113 coaches was also done to meet the demands on permanent basis, said Shri John Thomas, General Manager, Southern Railway in his Republic Day Speech.
The 71st Republic Day was also celebrated in other divisions and extra divisional offices all over Southern Railway with patriotic fervour.  A large number of Officers, staff and their families enthusiastically participated in these events. At Chennai, Shri P. Mahesh Divisional Railway Manager, Chennai Division unfurled the National Flag at Divisional Office, NGO Annexe, Park Town, Chennai. At Southern Railway Construction Office, Egmore, Shri A.K Shinha Chief Administrative Officer, unfurled the National Flag. At the Railway Claims Tribunal Office in Chetput, Justice Shri.K.Kannan, former Chairman, RCT unfurled the National Flag whereas at the Railway Electrification Office, Shri K. Nagendra Prasad, Chief Project Director, Railway Electrification, unfurled the National Flag and at the Joint Republic Day celebrations of the Perambur Workshops viz., Loco Works, Carriage Works and Electrical Works/Perambur Shri Arun Devraj, Chief Workshop Manager, Locoworks, unfurled the National Flag.



General Manager’s Speech
71st Republic Day 
26th January 2020
Dear colleague officers and their families from Headquarters and Divisions, 
Supervisors and staff and their families, Retired Officers present here, 
Representatives of recognised Trade Union & Associations,
Representatives of Press and Media, 
Ladies & Gentlemen & My dear children,
    Good morning to all of you on this very happy occasion of the 71st Republic Day of our Nation.  It is my privilege and pleasure to extend my best wishes and warm greetings to all of you.
    Indian Railway plays a vital role in nurturing national integrity, fulfilling the transportation needs across length and breadth of our country, irrespective of caste, creed, region or religion.
I am happy to share with you that under the dynamic leadership of our Hon’ble Prime Minister and with the able guidance of our Hon’ble Minister of Railways, Indian Railways has recorded zero passenger deaths in 2019, making 2019 as the safest year in Indian Railway’s history.  This historical milestone could be achieved with the sincere and dedicated hard work of Railway employees, for which, I would like to congratulate each employee of Southern Railway.
On this occasion, I would like to share with you a few highlights of Southern Railway’s performance.
During the year 2019-20 (up to December 2019), Southern Railway’s gross earnings were Rs. 6,310 crores which is 2.59% higher than last year earnings.  The passenger earnings of the current year has also grown up by 8.27% to Rs.3,607 Crores.
During the current year upto Dec. 2019, we have loaded 23.64 MTs of various commodities to different destinations across the country.  This includes 1068 rakes or 2.77 Million Tonnes of Fertilizers which has registered a 10% increase over last year and 1213 rakes or 3.18 MTs  of POL registering a 14% increase. One of the important highlights has been the movement of 334 Automobile rakes registering a 24% growth over last year.  
We have also extended a helping hand to Chennai residents during the water crisis by bringing 159 Water Special rakes from Jolarpet to Villivakkam from July to October, 2019.   
2 new goods sidings, 3 new goods sheds were opened this year.  We have also electrified 2 goods sidings this year so far as part of our efforts to improve freight  traffic.
We are also pursuing vigorously to complete various infrastructure projects to augment our capacity.  This year, we are planning to commission the third line between Guduvanchery- Singaperumal Koil (11 km.) and doubling of Mangaluru to Padil  (1.93 km.), gauge conversion project of Madurai-Usilampatti (37 km.) by Jan.2020, doubling of Ambalapuzha-Haripad (18.13 km.) by Feb.2020 and 4th line of Attipattu Pudunagar to Attipattu (1.7 km.) by March 2020, and Usilampatti to Bodinaikanur by April 2020.
Electrification of Cuddalore-Mayiladuthurai (74 km.) which is being undertaken by RVNL and Thiruvarur to Karaikkal port (40 km.) by RE will also be commissioned by 31.03.2020.  Adding vision to the flagship project of Ministry of Railways, Station development works at 6 stations viz., Chennai Egmore, Madurai, Salem, Palakkad, Kottayam and Tiruchchirappalli at a total cost of 109.55 crores are in progress.  
Safety is paramount in train operation.  Southern Railway has been consistent in ensuring the safe operations of train services at all times.  Our Safety Branch has been conducting safety audits, safety checks, inspections and seminars on a regular basis to educate the staff on safe train operations.  Because of the sincere efforts of all the Railway men on Southern Railway, during current the year, consequential train accidents during the year has come down from 4 during the last year to 1 during the current year.
    During April to Dec.19, rail / weld failures have reduced to 125 from 203 during the last year. This is the lowest figure in the last 20 years for the period from April – December.  We have completed CTR of 257.1 km., deep screening of 513.4 TKm, renewed 130 T/O and 15967 TKm of USFD testing to improve safety. 50 Nos. of Railway water way bridges have been re-habilitated till December 2019.

After eliminating Unmanned LCs totally on the Railway, we are now focusing on elimination of Manned LCs.  During April to Dec.19, 77 manned Level crossings were closed by constructing 14 ROBs and 49 RUBs/LUSs. We have completed interlocking of 64 LC gates, which is the highest among all zonal railways so far this year and we are targeting 3 Divisions namely Chennai, Salem and Palakkad for 100% interlocking of LC gates. Electronic Interlocking system to latest International safety standards has been provided at 15 stations during the current year.  Southern Railway has become one of the few Zonal Railways to have fully eliminated the legacy of Mechanical signalling system over its entire BG network thus improving safety. 

To cater to the increasing demand from our passengers, we have introduced new bi-weekly express train from Dr.MGR Central to Hubbali.  We have operated 1995 special trains and 4014 extra coaches to clear extra rush during festival/rush times creating 2,91,781 additional berths.  Permanent augmentation of 70 trains with 113 coaches was also done to meet the demands on permanent basis. We have also increased the maximum permissible speed of 5 sections, loop line speed of 1 section and relaxed 27 Permanent Speed Restrictions to reduce the running time of trains.  

In spite of offering adequate blocks for undertaking various track and safety related works and also running of special trains, we have improved our punctuality from 76% last year to 84% current year upto Dec. 2019, which is the best among various zones.
Southern Railway is always determined to accord highest priority to the passenger comforts and I would like to mention here few of the facilities provided.

So far, 38 Mail/Express have been converted in to LHB rakes consisting 59 rakes of 1229 coaches. 100% bio toilets have been completed in all 7134 coaches of SR. Under Project- Utkrisht, 43 rakes have been modernised with upgraded passenger friendly features. 100% LED lightings for the coaches will also be completed before 31.07.2020.
5 more BOOT laundries are being set up to improve the linen services in this calendar year. 
To improve the various passenger amenities, SR has spent 90.98 Crores this year so far and works are under way to get them completed before March 2020.  Southern Railway has also provided wi-fi facility at all 544 stations which had been identified.  

For the first time in S.Rly., to facilitate hassle-free movement for visually challenged passengers in railway stations, we have provided Braille Board Indicators at Coimbatore station, which has been widely appreciated by the passengers.  Airport-type illumination has been provided at 41 railway stations and 100% LED lighting at all 735 railway stations of Southern Railway.

This year, 5 lifts and 5 escalators have been additionally provided at railway stations taking the total to 74 Nos. of lifts and 100 Nos. of escalators all over Southern Railway.  For the benefit of differently-abled passengers, many other facilities like ramps, wheel chairs, low level toilets, portable ramps for trains, coaches for differently-abled are being provided. Further, Emergency Medical Assistance Centres at 26 stations, All Women Facilitation Centres at 7 stations, AC Paid Waiting Halls at 22 stations, Multi-level 2-wheeler parking system at 5 stations, Child Help Desk at 16 stations are continuing to render timely and needed assistance to our passengers.

Southern Railway has been taking steadfast measures to spruce up security at its stations.   We have recently deployed 6 Segways for patrolling of RPF at Dr.MGR central and Egmore stations.  562 criminals were arrested under RPUP Act and 95,614 offenders were booked under Railways Act. 336 touts were apprehended and on 291 occasions contraband goods have been seized.  Towards maintaining cleanliness, 57,878 persons were charged against littering and Rs.1.30 crores realised as fine from them. Our RPF teams have taken prompt action in rescuing missing/ abandoned children at various stations and 2,151 runaway children have been rescued and handed over to their parents/Child Helpline. 

Southern Railway is also taking various measures to tap the green energy and conserve electrical energy.  Southern Railway has 66.67% of the total RKm electrified. The remaining sections totaling to 1,166 Rkm, has been identified for 100% electrification of Southern Railway, for which work has already been commenced by CORE.  Electric Locos with regenerative braking capacity have been deployed in major trains resulting in a saving of 68 million units, regenerating 15% of their energy consumption from April to December 2019. We had also installed 5 units of 2.1 MWp windmills which have been generating upto 25.29 million units per year. 

During the current financial year, Southern Railway had also installed a total of  2.270 MWp solar power plants, thus taking the total capacity of solar plants available over SR to 4.625 MWp.
Southern Railway has bagged 3 awards from Bureau of Energy Efficiency for energy conservation efforts in the year 2018-19. GOC workshop has been certified with Gold Green Co rating. 31 stations of Southern Railway have achieved ISO 14001 certification for the environment friendly features.  In the initiative towards water conservation, 7 Water Recycling Plants with total capacity of 24.7 Lakhs Litres Per Day have been already commissioned.

As part of afforestation efforts,  around 70,000 trees were planted across Southern Railway  and 18 nurseries are developed and maintained in each Division.

In line with the directives of Hon’ble Prime Minister, Southern Railway has commenced procurement through GeM and Rs.36.93 crs worth of procurement has been done through GEM portal till 31.12.2019. SR has also disposed scrap to a value of Rs.209.11 Cr. registering a growth of 10.74 %.
One of the Digital initiatives of our Government – e-Office, has been implemented in Tiruchirapalli and Headquarters Offices this year and in phase 2 all Divisions and all Offices will be covered.  
Under Human Resources Management System (HRMS), we have created employees master data for 90% employees and e-SRs were created for 54% employees and  Madurai Division completed 100% e-SR, as 2nd Division in Indian Railways. 
Another digital initiative – UMID – has been started this year and 90.2% of employees have been registered and 51% have been issued with UMID cards.  Electronic Drawing Approval System (e-DAS) for approval of various drawings has also been started this year. 
All these achievements were possible due to our 80,000-strong employees who are our backbone.  Taking care of them is our top-most priority and Southern Railway has taken many initiatives for them to improve their skills, safety and redress their grievances quickly.  GPRS devices and low-weight gadgets have been provided for safety of our key-men and night patrolmen. 40 grievance Adalats have been held and 628 grievances were addressed during current year.  Under Project Saksham 100% employees have been covered with training.  Supervisors have also been given training at IIT, Chennai.  
Our Perambur Hospital has been rendering premium tertiary health care to Railway employees of all our Railways.  During the year 2019 so far, 586 cardiothoracic surgeries, 2046 special cardiology interventions, 178 Neurosurgeries, 39 vascular surgeries and new procedures in Gastroenterology have been performed. Medical team has also completed health check up for 71% of employees under Annual wellness Awareness Checkup. St.John Ambulance team also attended 30 various public service duties.  My congratulations to all Doctors, paramedical staff, Inspectors and cleaning staff for their achievements and stellar performance.  
On this occasion, I congratulate all the sports persons who have brought laurels to Southern Railway, Shri E.Karthick and Shri Satish Kumar for Bronze medal at the World Body building championships, Ms.Chandralekha and Ms.Chavi Sheravath for winning Gold in World Railway Athletic Championship, and Shri Manu Joseph, Minimol Abraham and Ms. Poornima for being a Member of Volleyball Team that won Gold at the World Railway Championships and at SAF Games.  I also congratulate all Sportsmen and Coaches of Southern Railway for their performance in various National and International events. 
Our recognized trade union have always been supporting us in the smooth running of administration and attaining our corporate goals.  I would like to thank them and all other staff, supervisors and officers, associations of Southern Railway for their support and assistance. I extend my best wishes for all. 
SRWWO – Headquarters and Divisions – are doing outstanding work in various welfare & community assistance activities and I extend my best wishes and greetings for the President of SRWWO and all their members for their commitment and dedication in rendering voluntary service on this day.
For any organisation, “progress” is the key word to sustain the organisation and to scale new heights.  “Progress” is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. This is the time for all of us to adapt to the changes we are undergoing and contribute the best for the success of our organisation. This would not only take the organisation to new heights but also fulfill the aspirations of all our citizens.  
On this day, I thank and congratulate each and every Officer, Supervisor and staff of Southern Railway for their wholehearted support and co-operation and I wish them all and their families a bright future and good luck in all their endeavours.
    Thank you,
‘JAI HIND’
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