6,000 Railway stations will be WiFi-enabled in 6 months

New Delhi: Around 6,000 railway stations will be WiFi-enabled in the next six-eight months, minister of railways Piyush Goyal said on Tuesday.

Speaking at the ‘Smart Railways Conclave’ organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Goyal said that the railways was focusing on smarter project implementation.

“We believe that if we have to leverage digital technology, the basic ingredient is to ensure access to technology in the remotest part of the country. The railways is working on a programme to ensure the last mile connectivity wherever we do not have fibre optics in our network. We are hopeful that in the next six-to-eight months, all railway stations, other than the halt stations, about 6,000 stations will be WiFi-enabled,” he said.

He said that the national transporter will have to start thinking, planning, and working smartly. “I think that’s the change that you would have seen the last four years,” he added.

On punctuality of trains, the minister said that between April 1 and today, punctuality has improved to 73-74 per cent as the railways has made a change by replacing the manual recording of time by station masters with data loggers placed at interchange points across the network that ensure computer generated time.

He also said that the railways was embarking on making itself efficient in a big way which will save USD 2 billion every year, which otherwise would have to be passed on to the passengers.
“With efficient railways, we won’t have to burden the poor,” he said.

On the occasion, the minister and other dignitaries released two knowledge papers, namely ‘FICCI-EY Report on Make in India in Railways Sector’ and ‘FICCI-AT Kearney Report on Technology: Transforming Railways Transportation’.

“We are working on putting a GPS device on every locomotive so that we will have every train marked on mobile phone, knowing exactly where they are”

-Piyush Goyal, minister of railways

Google partners with Andhra

  • Google said it has partnered with Andhra Pradesh State FiberNet Ltd (APSFNL) to facilitate Internet access to more than 12,000 villages, benefitting around 10 million people.
  • The tech giant also rebranded its ‘Tez’ as ‘Google Pay’ as part of its efforts to take the digital payments app to more online and retail merchants across the country.
  • Through ‘Google Station’, it provides Wi-Fi services in public locations in partnership with various entities.
  • Previously, Google had partnered RailTel to offer Wi-Fi access across 400 railway stations in India.

    89,000 CCTV cameras for 6,000 stations

  • The railways has floated a tender for its much-awaited surveillance system under which CCTV cameras would be installed in all its stations and coaches.
  • It has earmarked Rs3,000 crore in its 2018-19 budget to install CCTV systems across 11,000 trains and 8,500 stations to ensure safety of passengers, the officials said.
  • RailTel has floated a tender for the supply, installation, testing, commissioning, operation and maintenance of 89,845 IP (Internet Protocol) based video surveillance system (VSS).
  • They will be installed at 6,124 railway stations of A1, A, B, C, D and E category under northern, western, eastern and southern region.
  • It has asked for four types of full HD IP cameras — fixed dome type, bullet type, P/T/Z type and 4K UHD Bullet type — along with their accessories to provide high-level security and vigilance.