By: Pune Pulse
November 24, 2023
Pune: The act of parents allowing their children to sit on the snack trays of Vande Bharat Express trains has been strongly criticized by a railway official. This behaviour has been identified as a significant cause for the trays becoming broken and defective.
Trains equipped with chair car compartments, such as the Vande Bharat Express, typically feature fold-out trays affixed to the back of the seats. These trays serve the purpose of serving meals and snacks to passengers, but they are not designed to support the weight of toddlers or children.
An image shared by railway official Ananth Rupanagudi depicts a couple accompanied by two children. The parents are comfortably seated on the train chairs, while the children are positioned on the snack trays, facing their parents. In a recent post on social media platform X, a user shared a photo highlighting the issue of broken or defective snack trays on Vande Bharat and other trains. Despite providing photographic evidence, they expressed frustration with individuals who accuse them of blaming passengers for the issue.
Passengers are advised by Rupanagudi to refrain from keeping their children on snack trays as it may result in breakage. He emphasized that the Railways is often held accountable for damaged and faulty trays, even though it is evident that passengers are not adhering to the regulations.
Rupanagudi clarified that while it is possible for the Railways to impose fines or stricter restrictions on unruly behaviour, there are challenges that come with enforcing such measures. He emphasized the need to sensitize staff to request, nudge, and warn passengers against misusing fittings and amenities on trains, as stricter enforcement has its limitations.
The railway official consistently rejected proposals to penalize passengers who utilize their snack trays as makeshift seats for children. In response to a suggestion from an X user about imprinting trays with their maximum weight capacity, he reiterated, “As previously mentioned, a snack tray serves its purpose as a snack tray. Engaging in an extensive debate about its design would incur additional expenses, considering there are 1000 such seats in each 16-coach train.”