New Delhi, July 23: Often enough, we travel in Indian trains and order the IRCTC food. Just one look at the food tray and we lose our appetite. It has always been the case with the Indians. Majority of commuters carry their homemade food and snacks for their traveling time. Recently, the case was taken seriously by the Comptroller and Auditor General who has questioned the food quality at railway stations. In its report, it said that the food served at railway stations is unfit for human consumption and the hygiene standards.
The CAG audit report was tabled in Parliament on Friday and found the recent developments. The CAG performance audit also found unpurified tap water served as beverage, uncovered and unwashed waste bins, food left out in the open along with uncountable rats and cockroaches feeding on them. The inspection was carried out by CAG and the railways at selected 74 stations and 80 trains.
The report says the mess has been created due to frequent policy changes and the failure of the Indian Railways to take effective steps to bridge the gap to provide necessary infrastructure in terms of base kitchens, static catering units, and automatic vending machines etc.
In another report, the Federal auditor criticized Railways for not taking adequate steps to put in place infrastructural and other arrangements for improvement in parcel services. In its report, the CAG said, during 2013-2014 to 2015-2016 though the parcel earnings increased by 11.4 per cent, the tonnage carried in parcels declined by 6.2 per cent during the same period except in the Northern Railways and Northeast Frontier Railway. It said, this indicates that the overall increase in earnings was due to increase in the tariff and not on account of increase in volume of parcel business.
This indicates the current scenario of Indian Railways and let’s hope, Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu takes this into serious consideration. Citizen’s health is thousand times more important than the infrastructural development.