Flag-off delay dampens spirit

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  • Published 11.02.11

Bhagalpur, Feb. 10: If the flagging off of the Bhagalpur-Anand Vihar Garib Rath Express was any hint of what the train augurs in future, residents better give up the hope of reaching the national capital in less time.

The much-awaited train was flagged off this afternoon from Bhagalpur railway station two hours behind schedule, at 3.15pm.

State health minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey, BJP MP from Bhagalpur Shahnawaz Hussain and Bhagalpur mayor Bina Yadav jointly flagged off the train which is an extension of the tri-weekly Rajendra Nagar-Hazrat Nizamuddin Garib Rath Express.

Railway officials said the flagging off was delayed because the train arrived late at the railway station. The passengers, though, were a disappointed lot as they expected the first journey at least to wind up on time.

Vikas Sah, a businessman, said: “The train started two hours late on its first journey. If that is how it is going to run in the future, the extension of the train from Patna to Bhagalpur is not going to cut short the travelling hours much.”

Bhagalpur falls under the Malda division of Eastern Railway. M.K. Mathur, the divisional railway manager, said the train is an extension of the 12353/12354 Rajendranagar-Hazrat Nizamuddin Garib Rath Express. He said: “Keeping in view the rush of people to New Delhi, the railways has decided to extend the Garib Rath Express from Rajendra Nagar in Patna to Bhagalpur.”

The tri-weekly train will depart from Bhagalpur at 1.30pm and reach Anand Vihar terminal in Delhi the next morning at 8.25am. On the return journey, the train will leave from Anand Vihar at 5pm and reach Bhagalpur at 11am the next day.

Mathur said the train will benefit the people from the districts of eastern Bihar and Kosi region as they will be able to enjoy a comfortable journey at comparatively lower prices.

At the inauguration, Choubey said: “With the introduction of this new train the railways has fulfilled one of the long-awaited demands of the residents in the area.”