Indian Railways will transport water to drought-affected areas in the country, said an official statement from the Railway Ministry, issued on Friday.
Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has directed the railway administration to make necessary arrangements in this regard in Maharashtra, the statement added.
Rlys will transport 2750000 litres/rake drinking water in the drought-affected areas of Latur district,Maharashtra pic.twitter.com/skk6TszJfS
— Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) April 2, 2016
The Kota workshop of the Indian Railways has been directed to undertake steam-cleaning of its wagons for the purpose of transporting potable water. The two goods trains will be deployed in the Pandharpur-Latur section of the Solapur division.
The first goods train — consisting of 50 wagons will be ready for water after steam-cleaning — on 8 April, and the second train is expected to be ready around 15 April. These will be deployed in Latur during the summer season of the financial year 2016-17. The journeys of the goods trains will be arranged as per requirement.
In January this year, many goods trains were deployed to transport water from Nasirabad to Bhilwada in Ajmer Division, after demands by the Rajasthan Government and North Western Railway Zone. The water carrying capacity is around 55,000 litres per wagon which means around 275,0000 litres per train.
Two goods trains will be deployed in Latur during the summer and the trips of the trains will be arranged according to requirement. The carrying capacity of water is around 55,000 litres a wagon.
According to the official, the ministry has made arrangements for two goods trains consisting of 50 tanker-like wagons each (BTPN wagons) for the purpose of loading and transporting water in the drought-affected areas of Latur district on the request from Maharashtra government.
According to officials, the two rakes belong to Central Railway and have been brought to Kota from the Nagda-Ratlam route of Western Railway.
The news was tweeted by railway minister Suresh Prabhu. The state government's plan is to fetch water from the Ujani dam near Pandharpur.
The Union minister tweeted:
2 tank wagon spl consisting of 50 tank wagons each,being steam cleaned at Kota, will be used to carry water from Pandharpur to Latur.
— Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) April 1, 2016