At least 23 pairs of mail and express trains have been brought under the ‘On-board Housekeeping Service (OBHS) scheme’ under the East Central Railway (ECR) so far. Under the scheme implemented in all the five divisions of ECR, the railways has outsourced on-board housekeeping to private companies for proper maintenance of cleanliness inside coaches of long-distance trains.
According to ECR CPRO Amitabh Prabhakar, while 11 trains have been brought under the OBHS scheme in Danapur division, six trains in Samastipur division and two each in Dhanbad, Sonepur and Mughalsarai divisions have also been brought under it. Mughalsarai, Barauni, Muzaffarpur and Dhanbad have been made main centres of OBHS scheme, he said.
Danapur division has introduced OBHS scheme in some of the trains originating from Rajendra Nagar Terminal, Patna Junction and Danapur stations. The railways has formed a team of railway officials to make surprise inspection of cleanliness on the running trains. ECR GM Madhuresh Kumar is personally monitoring this scheme, the CPRO said and added there was a proposal to bring more trains under this scheme.
According to sources, this scheme has so far been available in 300 and odd trains across the country. Under the scheme, a team of cleanliness workers hired by the railways would travel on the trains from originating to terminating stations. Their job is to keep the passenger coaches, toilets, doorways and aisles neat and clean during the journey, the sources said and added the railways was spending a huge amount on the OBHS scheme with a view to providing homely comforts to passengers.
With the minister for railways putting more stress on maintaining cleanliness on the running trains, each zonal railway, including ECR, has already been brought under the OBHS scheme. The greatest advantage of this scheme is that passengers could call the cleaning staff to clean the coaches and toilets if they find them dirty and unhygienic, the sources said.