Working on a war footing, the Indian Railways has managed to remove or supervise all unmanned crossings on major routes across the country in the last five months, Indian Express has reported. This comes within one year after the railway minister Piyush Goyal assured the Rajya Sabha about rail safety measures taken by his ministry.
The Railways started working on this project days after at least 13 school children were killed in April when a train rammed into their school van at an unmanned railway crossing near Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh.
After the accident in Kushinagar, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had advanced the deadline to eliminate all unmanned level crossings to September this year. Over 1,272 people have died in accidents at unmanned level crossings since 2007-08.
In April, there were 3,470 unmanned level crossings. Most of these are in low traffic areas and on lines where trains are allowed a low maximum speed. On tracks where trains are allowed to go up to a speed of 130 km per hour, all level crossings have been eliminated, the Indian Express says, adding that only 600 unmanned level crossings will be left by the end of this month.
The Indian Railways has either eliminated the crossings by making subways for vehicles or manned by employing ex-servicemen or closed to avoid accidents in the future.
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