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Railways: Do the fares match the service?

Know your duty

THE TOPIC chosen is timely. While talking or criticising about the services or the lack of it, it will do well to remember a few truths. The railway facilities are used by a wide spectrum of people in our country; we have villagers, illiterate and literate urban folks and not many seem to know that anything under the sun serves us well only till we, the users, maintain it. Take for instance, the household gadgets, unless we use them carefully, we cannot get proper service. Most of us think it is the other man's responsibility to maintain cleanliness inside the coaches. And, when services do call for attention, how many passengers take the pain to complain to the concerned authority in the train or at the stations? Most of us fume and fret about inadequate services without caring to do something to rectify the situation. Apart from trying to do what I can immediately, I have taken the trouble of writing detailed letters to various officials in the Railways, including the Railway Minister about the various problems faced during a journey. If one can manage to forward these letters through a MLA/MP, prompt responses are assured; and I am glad to say that I have received positive replies followed by necessary action including pulling up an inebriated TTE, who was consequently suspended. In my small way, during journey I talk to co-passengers about this and how they can help the authorities. But the general and unfortunate refrain is, "what's the use?" As long as we continue with this attitude, we will get the service we deserve and not what we desire.

N. Anantaraman

Adyar

(The views expressed in this column do not reflect the views of the newspaper.)

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