Railway commissions new EI system of 800 routes at Kharagpur

New Delhi, (IANS) In a bid to increase speed and ensure punctuality of trains, Railways on Monday said that it has commissioned India’s largest state-of-the-art Electronic Interlocking (EI) system of 800 routes at Kharagpur station in West Bengal by replacing the century old Route Relay Interlocking system with 423 routes.

“On Sunday, we have commissioned the EI system of 800 routes at Kharagpur station,” a Railways Ministry statement said.

According to a senior Ministry official, this new technology will now allow station masters at Kharagpur station to set 800 different routes for trains in a few clicks of the mouse and keyboard.

Railway officials also said that the new interlocking system will ensure that no cross movement takes place during the crossings, to avoid disastrous collisions.

“Final work of commissioning was taken up during a block of 12 hours,” the Railways said.

The officials also said that preparations for commissioning of the EI system was commenced 18 months ago and involved hundreds of thousands of man-hours of installation and testing.

“Generally, work of this nature and magnitude, involving major yard remodelling, is commissioned by resorting to non-interlocked working for several days, resulting in severe disruption of railway traffic and public inconvenience from cancellation and late running of trains.

“And to avoid such a situation, innovative planning was done for commissioning the work in a traffic block of 12 hours, thereby ensuring bare minimum traffic disruptions and passenger inconvenience,” the Ministry said.

The Ministry also said that the new EI system has been provided in a distributed manner with the interlocking distributed over nine zones interconnected with highly reliable Optical Fibre Cables in a ring configuration.

Thus resulting in major reduction in use of copper cables which is not only unreliable, difficult to maintain, prone to theft but also costly.

Medaram Jathara

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