Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Indian Railways provides Divyangjans with various facilities to make their services more convenient and accessible for differently abled passengers

Indian Railways provides Divyangjans with various facilities to make their services more convenient and accessible for differently abled passengers

Ministry of Railways

Indian Railways offers various facilities for Divyangjans to make its services more convenient and accessible for differently-abled passengers

Specially designed coaches, concessional tickets and reservation quota are some of the facilities offered

Railway stations made more accessible by wheelchairs, battery operated vehicles and Yatri Mitra Sewa

03 DEC 2019

Encouraged by Accessible India Campaign launched in 2015 by the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, Indian Railways have been providing facilities/services to Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) so as to enable them a barrier free transportation across the Railway network. To make its services more convenient and accessible to differently-abled passengers (Divyangjans) at railway stations, Indian Railways offers the following facilities for the Divyangjans.

Also check: Facility for Disabled and Senior Citizens on Trains and at Railway Stations

  •     Specially designed coaches known as SLRD coaches with wider entrance doors to allow a wheel chair to enter, wider aisles, modified toilet and with 4 berths, the lower two for persons with disability and upper berths for attendants have been attached in almost all Mail/ express trains except Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Jan shatabdi Express trains and Duranto Express trains.
  •     Instructions have been issued that in all mail/ express trains, the SLRD coaches should be treated as unreserved coaches earmarked for exclusive use of persons with disability. In case of Garib Rath express trains which are fully reserved trains, these coaches are treated as reserved for booking by persons with disability (Divyangjans) travelling on the prescribed certificate on payment of full fare of 3 AC class of Garib Rath Express on first come first served basis.
  •     Separate counters are earmarked at various Passenger Reservation System (PRS) centres for dealing with the reservation requisitions received from Persons with Disability and Senior Citizens, if the average demand per shift is not less than 120 tickets wherever feasible. ln case there is no justification for earmarking of an exclusive counter for any of these categories of persons including handicapped persons, one or two counters depending upon the total demand are earmarked for dealing with the reservation requests for all these categories of persons.
  •     A reservation quota of four sleeper class berths and two berths in 3 AC has been earmarked in all trains running on non-suburban sections for persons with disability performing their journey on concessional ticket. The person accompanying the person with disability as escort is also allotted the berth out of this quota.
  •     Instructions have also been issued that in the tickets issued through PRS, to extent feasible, one lower berth should be allotted to person with disability and the person accompanying the person with disability as escort should be allotted middle/upper berth near the person with disability subject to availability of accommodation.
  •     After departure of train, if there are vacant lower berths available in the train and if any person with disability booked on the authority of concessional ticket, who has been allotted upper/middle berth, approaches for allotment of vacant lower berths, the Conductor/Train Ticket Examiner (TTE) has been authorized to allot the vacant lower berth to them after making necessary entries in the chart.
  •     The facility to book concessional e-tickets online using the photo-identity card issued by Railways has also been introduced to facilitate persons with disability.

As per Railway rules, concession in fares is admissible to four categories of Persons with Disability. The names of these four categories, and the element concession admissible, are as under :-

Indian Railways provides Divyangjans with various facilities to make their services more convenient and accessible for differently abled passengers

To make accessibility better, the following facilities are being served currently at stations:-

  •     Wheel chair on platforms: Around 7000 wheelchairs have been provided at more than 5400 railway stations. The wheelchairs are provided by Railways and are given to attendant of the Divyangjan absolutely ‘free of cost’ to escort them from and to the trains. However, when attendants are not willing or available, Sahayaks can be hired on nominal rates to escort the Divyangjans.
  •     In addition a scheme of Yatri Mitra sewa is also available, wherein a sahayak provided by IRCTC assists the person with disability by providing wheel chair cum porter services at major stations. The Yatri Mitra seva service can be booked on IRCTC e-ticketing website and 139 (IVRS and SMS) or through a mobile.
  •     Battery operated Vehicle (BOV) vehicles are available at some stations and Powers have further been delegated to Zonal Railways for provision of BOV free of charge for person with disability through CSR route/commercial publicity route and through chargeable route.
  •     In addition to above, it has been decided to provide following short term facilities for persons with disability at stations (Comprehensive instructions for passenger amenities and user facilities at stations dated 09.04.2018):

  1.     Provision of standard ramp with railing for barrier free entry.
  2.     Earmarking of at least two parking lots for vehicle used by disabled persons.
  3.     Provision of non-slippery walkway from parking lot to building.
  4.     Provision of signage of appropriate visibility.
  5.     Provision of at least one drinking water tap suitable for use by a disabled person.
  6.     Provision of at least one toilet on the ground floor.
  7.     “May I help you” booth.

  •     In the long term the following facilities are being planned for persons with disability at Non-suburban Grade (NSG)1 to NSG 4 category stations:

  1.     Provision of facility for inter-platform transfer.
  2.     Engraving on edges of platforms.

An Executive Director level committee is also formed to frame guidelines regarding Accessibility standards over Indian Railways. ED /Station development is the convenor of the committee.

On the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, Indian Railways reaffirms its commitment to the cause of empowering of Divyangjans through the ‘Accessible India Campaign’.


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