Train services grinding to a halt; already six trains withdrawn from daily running



By Dasun Edirisinghe


Train services were maintained minus more than six trains daily from the Maradana Railway Station, especially during office hours due to 30 locomotives awaiting repairs at the Ratmalana railway workshop for more than two months, the department sources said.


They said that the locomotive repairs were held up due to a work–to–rule campaign launched by the railway clerical staff.


"Due to the clerical staff trade union action the salaries and overtime payment of technical workers engaged in train and engine repairs have been delayed," an officer who spoke to The Island on condition of anonymity said, adding that it was the main reason for delays in repairing those engines.


He said the locomotives awaiting repairs in the Ratmalana railway yard were: M2 class (03), M4 class (02), M5 class (02), M6 class (01), M7 class (05), M8 class (04), M10 class (01), S8 (06), S9 (03), S10 (02) and S11 (01).


Several locomotives which were in the service at present were breaking down during the run due to heavy workload, the official said, noting that several office trains commencing from Maradana had been stopped due to breakdowns during the last two weeks.


He said it was very difficult to stick to the daily time table without 30 locomotives.


Transport Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, contacted for comment, said he was aware of the issue and he had instructed General Manager Railway Wijeya Amaratunga to take necessary action to pay the salaries and other allowances of the technical staff without any delay.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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