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Blog Entry# 4967691
Posted: May 23 (11:17)

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SECR/South East Central
May 23 (11:17)   Unclean toilets deficiency in service: Forum fines railways Rs 60,000

MAREECH_HA1NKS~   335 news posts
Entry# 4967691   News Entry# 452266         Tags   Past Edits
Nagpur: Overlooking a complaint about soiled toilets has resulted in a fine of Rs 60,000 being slapped on the Railways. The Gondia Consumer Court, in perhaps a first-of-its-kind verdict in Maharashtra, said this can be termed as “deficiency in services” and “mental and physical harassment”. The judges – chairman Bhaskar Yogi and member Sarita Raipure – asked divisional railway managers (DRMs) of Central Railway in Mumbai and South East Central Railway (SECR) in the city, to pay the amount within a month. If they fail to, they would have to pay it with 15% interest from January 27, 2020, the date when the complaint was lodged.
The fine includes Rs30,000 for mental and physical harassment, Rs15,000 for the cost of complaint, and
Rs15,000 to be deposited in the forum’s Consumers’ Welfare Fund. Both the DRMs were directed to institute a divisional inquiry and recover the fine from the salaries of officials who failed to perform duties.
Prachi Rathod, her daughter and one family member had boarded Geetanjali Express from Kalyan for travelling to Gondia on December 25, 2017. They had booked tickets in second AC. The toilets in the coach were dirty and choked. Due to the unbearable stink, her daughter suffered bouts of vomiting, said Sudhir Rathod who pleaded the case on his wife Prachi’s behalf.
She then made an online complaint and also requested railway officials on the train to clean the toilets. However, none of her requests were entertained till the next day. At Nagpur station, she lodged a written complaint with ticket examiner DP Tiwari. Yet, no one came to clean the toilets till Gondia. She then filed another complaint with the station superintendent on December 31.
Even after repeatedly enquiring about the fate of her complaints, she failed to get any response from the railway authorities. She then sought information under the RTI Act, where she was informed that a Kolkata-based firm GS&TS Limited was imposed a fine of Rs1,000 for dereliction of duties.
She then approached the forum with her father’s help, demanding Rs1.10 lakh compensation for the mental and physical harassment and towards the cost of litigation.
The respondents contended that other toilets were available in the coach and she could have used them. They informed that Tiwari had directed subordinates to clean the toilets after her complaint. They further argued that except her, none of the other passengers complained in this regard. However, the forum reminded respondents of their statutory duties as per the ‘citizens charter on passenger service’ and ‘duties of ticket examiners and conductors’ to maintain the coaches and other railway premises clean.
* From railways own reply it was clear that wash rooms were choked
* It was also proved that those were not cleared till train reached Gondia
* From RTI reply, it was evident that Kolkata firm was slapped Rs1,000 fine
* Citizens charter entrusts responsibility on rlys to maintain clean premises
* It’s ticket examiner duty to ensure cleanliness of coaches as per rules
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