Transportation of essential items like medical supplies, medical equipment, food, etc in small parcel sizes is going to be very important during the lockdown in the wake of COVID-19. In order to fill in this vital need, Indian Railways has made railway parcel vans available for quick mass transportation by E-Commerce entities and other customers including State governments. Railways have decided to run time-tabled Parcel Special trains on select routes, to ensure uninterrupted supply of essential items.
Zonal Railways are regularly identifying and notifying routes for these Parcel Special trains. Presently these trains are being operated on sixty-five (65) routes. These routes have been identified to include:
i) Regular connectivity between major cities of the country, viz Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru & Hyderabad
ii) Connectivity from state-capitals/important cities to all parts of the state
iii) Ensuring connectivity to the North-eastern part of the country
iv) Supply of milk and dairy products from surplus regions (Gujarat, AP) to high demand regions
v) Supply of other essential items (agricultural inputs, medicines, medical equipment, etc) from producing regions to other parts of the country
On 14.04.2020 till 18:00 hrs, seventy seven (77) trains were run, out of which seventy five (75 ) were time-tabled Parcel Special trains. 1835 Tonnes of material was loaded, giving an earning of Rs 63 lacs to Railways in one day.
The total number of trains run till 18:00 hrs on 14.04.2020 is 522, out of which 458 have been time-tabled trains. 20, 474 Tonnes of consignments have been loaded, and the earnings have been around Rs 7.54 crores.