Muzzafarnagar rail accident: are we travelling with our lives on the line?

Posted by Harsh Gautam
August 21, 2017

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August 19, 2017, A normal day for all of us, people working in their offices completing their tasks, people sitting at their homes scrolling news feeds at Facebook and watching TV, but who knew that they were going to witness another rail tragedy this year. The city of Muzzafarnagar went into deep silence and shock when they saw the innocent lives being taken out from the debris of the derailed train in Khatauli, Muzzafarnagar. When I switched to the news channel, the eyes of the witnesses were clearly expressing how horrific the situation was. People were crying, I could see the injured being carried away on the stretchers, screaming and crying in pain and the helpers from the nearby areas shouting and cursing the authorities and I could see the NDRF officials and other rescue forces in panic and the efforts they were putting in to get the bodies out from the debris. The Kalinga-Utkal express derailment wasn’t the first train tragedy this year, it was the fifth. But why is it that the authorities are always held liable? Where does the authority miss that these rail accidents take place? Aren’t we responsible too that we don’t use our liberty to ask and check the authorities time to time? And the last contention which I’m raising is, ARE WE TRAVELLING TO OUR GRAVES IN THESE TRAINS?

Ladies and Gentlemen, WELCOME, THE INDIAN RAILWAYS IS AT YOUR SERVICE, PROVIDING THE PATH TO THE GRAVEYARD. As already mentioned, this is the fifth rail tragedy this year. According to the stats, there were 8 major rail tragedies last year, 10 in 2015 and several before. The stats of the deaths and injured ones are more horrific. But why have these stats been displayed before you? These stats have been provided because these are an eye opener for you, for us, for the youth and for the whole nation. Friends, the nation is in its 71st year of Independence and still we are using the age old colonial rail tracks and bridges. At some places we are even using the the colonial period rail engines and locomotives. Isn’t it an irony for a nation which aimed to be a “FULLY DEVELOPED NATION” by 2020 and expecting to be fully developed by 2030. Today we have gone through the inside loopholes of our railway network, but there are more to go, soon we’ll face more harsh realities of our system.

Now, coming back to the issues raised above, how can we solve the above contentions and can get back to the track? Now taking up the first and second contention collectively, I again want to raise the point, are the authorities only responsible, aren’t we liable too? Now, you will be thinking what can we do to stop these accidents? The simple answer is we cannot stop the accidents to occur but we can minimize the chances of one going to occur.

We all know that government and the authorities asks the public to give feedback about the services they are providing. But we ignore them as we think that they won’t take a look on their feedback and why should we waste our time on these things. Due to this mentality of ours, the ratio of giving feedback in India is just 1:20, i.e, just a 5 in a crowd of 100. This proves that we don’t know the worth of our advises and voices, which can help the government in rectifying the glitches. Even the warm bloods, the youth, who talks about putting the voices in front of everyone, is quite casual and ignorant in these matters. So, what is the use of these voices, just to post crap on Facebook and Twitter in the name of freedom of speech. Are “FREEDOM OF SPEECH” and “RIGHT TO EXPRESS” just a hashtag trends for us? Why don’t we use if the government is itself providing it? My dear friends, ask yourself these questions and you will realize that only the government is not guilty, WE OURSELVES ARE SETTING OUR LIVES ON THE LINE.

And here comes an end to my views but don’t let yours to stop on this issue. I just want to conclude by quoting the famous line of Swami Vivekananda that “ARISE, AWAKE AND STOP NOT TILL THE GOAL IS ACHIEVED”. LET US MAKE THIS OUR GOAL, THE GOAL TO BECOME AN ACTIVE CITIZEN OF A DEVELOPING NATION AND STOP NOT TILL THE GOAL, TO BE A DEVELOPED ONE, IS ACHIEVED!

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