The thought of Indian railway stations usually bring to mind thoughts of unclean platforms filled with human excreta and trash. That is what the 90s image of a railway platform was genuinely like. But things have turned for the better, slowly but surely, and in an amazingly proud moment for Visakhapatnam, the City of Destiny’s railway station stands as one of the cleanest stations among the 75 of the busiest stations in the country.
Visakhapatnam is followed by Secunderabad, Jammu, Vijayawada and the Anand Vihar railway stations; according report released by the Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu. This survey has been conducted by the Quality Council of India based on criteria such as toilets on platforms, management of tracks and dustbins.
The survey conducted now is the third survey on cleanliness by the railways. It is being done to keep the rail premises clean, as part of the ‘Swachh Rail’ campaign. The Union minister has said that they want all the stations to be clean and said that many stations have improved the ranks from the last time.
Railway stations are categorized into A1, A, B, C, D, E and F; which is based on the annual passenger revenue by the ministry. The stations that bring an annual revenue of Rs 50 crore are put into the ‘A1’ category and the stations which contribute between Rs 6 crore and Rs 50 crore it is put into the ‘A’ category. However, all the sub-urban stations are in the ‘C’ category and all halts in between the stations are put in the ‘F’ category.
According to the results, there are 75 stations categorized under the A1 and 332 stations under the A category. Under the A category the Beas Railway Station in Punjab was rated as the cleanest which is followed by the Khammam railway station in Telangana and Jogbani in Bihar has been marked as the dirtiest in the A category stations.
Visakhapatnam railway station has come a long way from where it once was. With renovations done, escalators put in, a 24-hour food court that boasts of some of the best eateries, a luxury lounge that gives the waiting rooms in airports a run for their money, free WiFi, the launch of Vistadome trains for Araku and more, the railway station has made numerous strides in the last two years alone.