Southern Railway is on track to become the first zonal railways to start work on an Integrated Security System at select stations, Southern Railway General Manager Deepak Krishan said on Monday.

Addressing the valedictory session of the 56th Railway Week celebrations, Mr. Krishan said Southern Railway was the first zonal railway to finalise the tender for provisioning the integrated system under revised security guidelines.

“Though the zone operates in relatively better policed States, there is need to install integrated security systems to monitor and activities at all stations,” he said.

Noting that the exercise involved a multi-department effort, including the security and signal wings, Mr. Krishan said the first phase of the installation work initially targeting 14 important stations, was expected to be completed this year.

Although the zone witnessed six accidents, there were no casualties, Mr. Krishan said. In terms of the accident per million train km ratio, the zonal railways achieved a value of 0.097 (accidents per million km) that was well below the benchmark of 0.17. Punctuality at 92.1 per cent was a marked improvement on the previous year's record of 85.6 per cent and exceeded the Railway Board's target of 90 per cent, he said.

Pointing to the negligence of road users as a reason for the large number of accidents at unmanned crossings, Mr. Krishan said in addition to the 15 level crossings that were manned during the last fiscal, 83 more crossings would be manned shortly.

Southern Railway introduced 16 mail/express trains, 11 passenger trains, 10 EMU and one MEMU service apart from operating about 1,651 special trains and adding 7,678 extra coaches.

The construction wing had overcome a challenging year to complete 250 km of new lines, gauge conversions and doublings, exceeding the target by 24 km, he said.

Listing the performance highlights of Southern Railway, Mr. Krishan said receipts of Rs. 2,319 crore from passenger traffic and Rs. 1,944 crore from freight during the fiscal ended exceeded the aggregates for the previous year and the zone was likely to end up with working expenses to the tune of Rs. 4,800 crore, achieving a better operating ratio of 134.6 per cent, against the previous year's ratio of 137.5 per cent. In fact, the Rs. 28 crore earnings so far this year from commercial publicity was a record in the history of the zonal railway, he said.

Mr. Krishan distributed awards and shields to various categories of Railways staff for outstanding performance.

N. K. Prasad, Chief Personnel Officer, Southern Railway and S. Rangarajan, Senior Deputy General Manager also participated.