It refers to shocking news-report that a special train halting many other trains including like Rajdhani and Shatabdi was run from Bina to Sukhi Sewania (Bhopal) on 31.05.2016 for prominent BJP Parliamentarian Poonam Mahajan to enable her to catch a flight to Mumbai. Even clarification given by railway-officers that she was accommodated in the return-journey of a special train which according to ‘rule-book’ which was sent to from Bhopal to Sagar district for Union Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha as per protocol where both Manoj Sinha and Poonam Mahajan were to attend inaugural-function of a Railway over-bridge, requires change in age-old rules giving ministers in Railway Department a monarchy-like princely
Another question rises that why only Poonam Mahajan was allowed to board the ’empty’ train? Such a facility should have been provided even to normal passengers on payment of cost. Enquiry should also be made if Poonam Mahajan paid for the privileged and exclusive rail-travel. All privileged facilities till now available to ministers in Railway Department and members of Railway Board including of railway-saloons and special trains should be at least now abolished after seven decades of India getting freedom from monarchy-rule of British.
Union Railway Ministry and Union Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs should formulate some system whereby cost of non-travel by Parliamentarians on their reserved accommodation may be charged from personal pockets of erring Parliamentarians.
Presently it is quite often that Parliamentarians do not care to cancel reservation in case of non-travel because they have not to personally suffer any cost for non-travel resulting in usual ‘No vacancy’ chart especially in first-class air-conditioned rail-travel. Parliamentarians should be allowed free rail-facility only in second-class air-conditioned rail-travel with priority in reservation. Travel in higher class may only be on payment of cost-difference from personal pockets of Parliamentarians.
SUBHASH CHANDRA AGRAWAL
1775 Kucha Lattushah
Dariba, Chandni Chowk
DELHI 110006 (India)