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POST TIME: 1 June, 2019 00:00 00 AM
Holidaymakers suffer as trains fail to keep schedule
STAFF REPORTER, Dhaka

Holidaymakers suffer as trains fail to keep schedule

On the first day of train journey before Eid-ul-Fitr, railways minister Nurul Islam Sujan had to apologise once again to homebound people  yesterday (Friday)—this time for late running of some major inter-city trains. The minister was sorry earlier when the “Rail Sheba” app failed to work properly on May 22, after the ministry ensured hassle-free journey of Eid holidaymakers.

After collecting train tickets with too much of hassle through the app and also from the counter, holidaymakers suffered immensely following disruption in the schedule of a number of trains, particularly those that run on northern routes.

At least four trains did not start on time and got late by hours. Frustrated people were seen waiting at different stations for their Eid journey in the capital city of Dhaka.

Homemaker Sayeda Israt Begum said she came to the station at 8am with her children to catch a train for Rangpur and had been waiting since then (it was 12 noon). At 12:05pm, the Rangpur Express, one of the most popular trains, did not arrive at Kamalapur. It was scheduled to start from Dhaka at 9:00am.

Railway officials said the train was caught in a storm on Thursday night on its way to Dhaka and was delayed by two hours. Then again, it was delayed by about three hours due to a technical glitch.

Kuddus Mia, who was also waiting for the Rangpur Express, expressed his anger. “I am here with my family for more than five hours. Me, my wife and two of my daughters are waiting


here having fasting. But you know, we have no words to express our pain.”
The Rangpur Express left the station seven hours behind schedule, the Rajshahi-bound Dhumketu Express was delayed by two hours and 15 minutes, the Khulna-bound Sunderban Express by one hour and 15 minutes, and the Nilphamari-bound Nilsagar Express by one hour and 40 minutes.
Railway minister Nurul Islam Sujan apologised for intercity train schedules going heywire.
Nurul apologised after visiting Kamalapur Railway Station around 10:30am to inspect the overall activities of the station authorities on the occasion of Eid.
He said: “Eighteen intercity trains have left Kamalapur station at different directions till 10:00am. Among these, 14 have set off on their journey according to schedule. Four trains, including the Sunderban Express, Dhumketu Express and the Rangpur Express, will start late." Informing about the seven-hour delay in the departure of the Rangpur Express from Kamalapur station, the minister said: “I am expressing remorse on behalf of the ministry for this delay.”
Nurul Islam Sujan ensured that the Rangpur Express will not be delayed as a separate train has been arranged. The train will reach Dhaka on time.
Around two crore people live in the capital for jobs and they leave the capital to celebrate Eid with their near and dear ones, Nurul said. “We’re trying to provide good services,” he added.
He also said the railway stations will be upgraded to international standards using modern technologies.
Advance train ticket sales for Eid began on May 22, but people suffered a lot to avail themselves of tickets through the app due to technical glitches on the first day itself.