Improvement in Railways’ Catering Services
Improvement of catering services is an on-going process. Steps taken/being taken to further improve the catering services include (i)Third Party Audit of catering services to be conducted at periodic intervals by independent and reputed auditing agencies accredited by NABCB (National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies) as empanelled by the zonal railways. The parameters for audit include all aspects of catering services like personal hygiene, infrastructure facilities, cleaning and sanitation, food safety, storage facilities, implementation of regulatory, statutory and safety regulations, quality of presentation etc. (ii) Introduction of E-Catering so that passengers can book the food of their choice through internet. (iii) Introduction of Pre-cooked Food (ready to eat) meals of reputed brands to improve the quality, hygiene and to provide variety of options of meals to the passengers. (iv) A centralized Catering Service Monitoring Cell (CSMC) has been set up having a toll free number 1800-111-321 for prompt redressal of the passenger grievances related to the catering activities for real time assistance to travelling public. (iv) Imposition of stringent punitive action including heavy penalties in case of deficiencies in services.
About 17,440 complaints have been reported regarding catering services in Railways during the last three years and current year (i.e. 01.01.2012 to 31.03.2015). Penal action has been taken on the defaulter licensees including termination of contracts in 9 cases and imposition of fines in 5903 cases.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.