Sharing Experience with Sh. Arvind Sharma Ex Member Electrical/Railway Board/Ministry of Railways/India
Mr. Arvind Sharma is straight, simple, technically sound, planner and listen to his junior bringing out the best out of them. I took the opportunity of talking to him to share his experience while working in Railways. He narrates
I joined Indian Railways on 8-10-1965 and retired on 28-2-2003, a contended career spanning 37 years and 4 months. My career in Railways progressed along with electrification and modernisation in Electrical Deptt. I am proud to say that timely decisions taken at that time is paying now.
I enjoyed every post. But most challenging was my posting as DRM-Samastipur. I joined in April 1993. In July 1993 a major accident took place in my division in which 22 persons died and more than 50 persons were injured. It was an experience of handling the trauma at the accident site beside visits by two Railway Board Members and Honorable MR to the site.
By the end of July heavy floods occurred affecting traffic on an important route
All these things made me resolve that Modernisaton in the Division was necessary. Specialy in Signaling and Telecomunication area of Samastipur Divison
Two things made me think in a direction of modernization. We had a few stations with modified non interlocking. At Hayaghat station it caused the Major accident. The Telefonica exchange was an old Stroger type and was to be replaced by a similar exchange through a Works Program item costing 27 lacks approved by the Railway Board. It was a major task to get it changed to a latest technology electronic exchange. An electronic exchange would have costed almost same if not less. But could be done by making persistent efforts at the Railway level and then at the Board level including convincing the then ML by arguing that we should go in for the latest technology provided the cost is same. We could complete the same in my tenure itself. The other exchanges at Dabhanga , Narkatiaganj and Sahrsa also got converted by similar exchanges during my tenure itself after the main exchange was converted.
The BG conversion of Samastipur Darbhanga was long pending item on the Division . The same was taken up and completed during my tenure. The original planing was to provide standard one interlocking with Semafore Signals. I insisted on provision of Colour light Signals and panel interlocking and the work was accordingly done. We had Steam traction and by the time I left three steam sheds were closed and the fourth one was on verge of closing.
Similarly all BG conversions were similarly done with Panel Interlocking and Colour Light Signal. By the time I left Division, we had electronic exchanges and panel-interlocking on most of important routes.
This made me to understand the impact of technology in improving productivity. Evaluate technology with all sincerity and then implement without any if and buts and whole heartily. Hopefully one will succeed.
During my tenure as AGM Eastern Railway, I could persuade replacement of mechanical interlocking whenever due by Panel Interlocking. In any case, I continued in my endeavor as Member Electrical afterwards.
I would like to mention some of the important decisions taken by Electrical Department which is paying dividend even today are
- Planning and execution of Railway Electrification work on Heavy Haul and dense routes with gradients
- Continuity of Traction
- Roof mounted Air Conditioning Equipment
- CLW meeting the loco production requirement
- Setting up of Rail Bijlee Nigam to have our own power generation for traction purpose.
My many thanks to railelectrica to persuade me to go back to my dynamic days from the present mindset of satisfied retired life and wording the experience.
I am thankful to Sh Arvind Sharma for his kind support in sharing his experience. He has also shared few of his photograph with Ex MLs
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