KDS Railway was set up to cater to the traffic needs for docks, warehouses in the vicinity and various public and private sidings located around the docks. It works as a terminal agent of Indian Railways and operationally under Sealdah Division of Eastern Railway. KDS Rly has a working Agreement with E.Rly and render services to the users on behalf of them. Though KDS railway initially had many interfaces with E.Rly/S.E.Rly and covered a wide range of area including Chitpur, Shalimar, and Garden reach, at present its operation is truncated in the dock area only with the sole marshalling yard at EJC. The total track length of KDS railway is about 18 km.
It is connected with Eastern Railway through Majerhat Railway Station. Indian Railways bring traffic for KDS through full fledged goods trains (rakes) in the EJC (East Dock) Junction), by their locomotives. Thereafter KDS railway, after necessary documentation and certain mechanical work, place the trains in the respective handling points (inside Docks or Private sidings), in full or installments as per operational feasibility. After completion of loading/unloading operation at Sheds/Docks/sidings etc, the rakes are hauled out and outward trains are formed at the marshalling yard (EJC). Again, after documentation, the outward rakes are dispatched by the locomotives provided by ER. Internal haulage of rakes are done by the locomotives of KDS railway. Presently, there are two such locomotives of WDS 6 type, both on w et lease from M/S RITES Ltd.
Presently, the railway system serves 27 KPD to 29 KPD, 13/14 NSD (for non-container traffic) and CPY at 7 NSD (for containers). Though there are railway tracks from 22-26 KPD and 1-4 NSD, these areas are not used since long. Apart from these, there are following Public/Private sidings which have rail linkage with KDS railway and receive rail borne traffic.
1. CESC (Southern Generating Station)
2. FCI (JJP Depot)
3. Balmer Lawrie & Co.
4. Pig Iron Supply Syndicate
5. Braithwaite & Co.
6. Transrail Logistics.
7. CONCOR EJC Terminal (CTKR).
Out of these terminals and sidings, the operational work of CESC is carried out by themselves, by an working contract between CESC and KoPT from 2001, but for other areas, KoPT railway itself provides the operational service.
The present dock bound rail traffic consists mainly of Containers from MAVB, BPSL, HIMB and AMJ, and that destined for Nepal. However, sporadic traffic like coal, wheat, peas, steel pipes and coils, fertilizer, limestone etc are also handled.
The traffic a/c private sidings are mainly Thermal Coal (CESC), Food grain at FCI (JJP Siding), Aluminum ingots from NALCO at BL & Co, materials for manufacturing wagons at B.W.Co, and containers at Transrail, PISS, and CTKR.
Supporting Services :
The operational and commercial work of KDS railway is done by Railway section of Traffic Department. Other supporting services are provided by different department/sections. A list of such supporting services with department/section is mentioned below.
1. Track Maintenance and repair-Civil Engineering Deptt.
2. Locomotive Supply/maintenance-RITES (On monthly hire).
3. Re-railment-Local support by users failing which by ER Accident Relief Train (on hire).
4. Pressure release/creation of incoming/outgoing rakes- Chief Mechanical Engineering Deptt.
5. Security - CISF at EJC yard, and PSO in other areas.
A. Charges levied :
Various railway charges are realised from the users are mentioned below :
- Terminal Charge – This charge is levied for the terminal services rendered by KDS to various users on behalf of Eastern Railway. The rates are fixed and sanctioned by Railway Board.
- Local haulage charge – As the terminal charge is not sufficient to keep Port Railway financially viable, the Railway Board has sanctioned and allowed the Port to realise local haulage charge from the users to meet the deficit. The rate of this charge and any revision to it has to be sanctioned by the Railway Board.
- Consolidated Charge – Previously various different charges like siding charge, diversion charge etc. Used to be realized from the users for rendering different railway services. Presently, all these charges have been clubbed under the head of consolidated charge which is realized from the users. The rate is 'on per tonne basis' depending on the marked carrying capacity on each wagon. This rate is specified in KoPT scale of rates.
- Demurrage Charge – This is a penal charge levied on users for delay in the process of loading/unloading of wagons when done by the users. There is a stipulated free time, on expiry of which demurrage is levied. The free time and rate of demurrage charges is the same as in vogue in the Zonal Railways and as approved by the Railway Board.
- Stabling Charge – This is levied on special type of wagons which are considered as non inter-chargeable with E.Rly (like newly built wagons manufactured by Braithwaite & Co and wagons a/c CONCOR and other PCOs) and detained at the yard pending clearance by Eastern Railway. This, like consolidated charge, is also under KoPT's Scale of Rates and subject to revision of the same from time to time.
- Loco hire Charge – This charge is levied on the users for special utilisation of KDS locomotive by various users apart from the normal loco services rendered. This is also under Scale of Rates and revised accordingly.
B. Charges Payable :
KDS Rly has a working Agreement with E.Rly and render services to the users on behalf of them. As per the Agreement, KDS pays wagon hire charges to E.Rly for detention of the same in its system. Demurrage, which is collected from the users, has also to be paid back to the E.Rly if the same is in excess of wagon hire charges accrued. The rate of wagon hire charge is fixed by Railway Board.
Performance Indicators :
Generally two types of performance measures are used to judge the efficiency of a railway system- Operational and Commercial.
The important parameters for operational performance are :
- TRT for rakes.
- Detention a/c Port as percentage of TRT.
- Number of rakes/wagons handled.
- Amount of traffic handled.
- Daily wagon balance (Av).
- Total Rail borne traffic as percentage of total traffic.
- Number of derailment/accidents.
- time/days lost due to unfitness of tracks.
The Common Commercial Parameters are :
- Operating Income.
- Operating Expenditure.
- Demurrage Charge as percentage of Wagon hire charge.
- Operating Ratio.
In the year 2015-16, KDS railway handled 5.21 million tones, about 31% of which was of EXIM nature. About 47% of the total traffic belonged to CONCOR (CTKR) Terminal. Though the traffic in KDS railway increased almost continuously since 2002-2003, there is enough scope for further improvement by using rail services for transportation of dry bulk cargo and Containers as it is a more economical, environment friendly mode of transport. Proper marketing with efficient and effective operational service is required to achieve it.
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