Thursday, August 24, 2017

Ashwani Lohani, who was at the helm of Air India for two years was appointed as the Chairman of the Railway Board, after incumbent A K Mital tendered his resignation on Wednesday after Kaifiyat express derailed near Auriya in Uttar Pradesh.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published:August 24, 2017
Air India’s Ashwani Lohani takes charge as the Chairman of the Railway Board at the Rail Bhavan on Thursday. (Express photo by Tashi Tobgyal)

Ashwani Lohani, who was named the new Railway Board Chairman last night, said safety and station modernisation would be his priority. He added cleanliness, eradication of VIP culture and corruption would be the other areas where he would focus on.

Lohani, who was at the helm of Air India for two years, was appointed the Chairman of the Railway Board after incumbent A K Mital tendered his resignation on Wednesday after Kaifiyat Express derailed near Auriya in Uttar Pradesh. The derailmemt

Union Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu had also offered to quit following two back-to-back train accidents. On August 19, Kalinga Utkal Express derailed near Muzaffarnagar killing 22 people and injuring scores of passengers. In a second accident in less than a week, nine coaches of the Kaifiyat Express derailed near Auriaya injuring over 70 persons on Wednesday.

A 1980 batch officer of the railways’ mechanical service, Lohani featured in Limca Record in 2007 for having four “engineering degree equivalents” in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Metallurgical Engineering and Electronics & Telecommunication Engineering from Institution of Engineers, India. He also set a Guinness World Record in 1998 for running the oldest working steam locomotive in the world. He successfully piloted the nomination of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway as a UNESCO world heritage site. He was decorated with the railway national award for outstanding performance in 1996.

Lohani was also decorated with the railway national award for outstanding performance in 1996. He also successfully piloted the nomination of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway as a UNESCO world heritage site. He also served as the India Tourism Development Corporation chairman and headed the Rail Museum.


The Railway Ministry was under fire by the Opposition for repeated train accidents. The Congress claimed that 27 major railway accidents had happened since Modi government came into power, resulting in the death of 259 passengers.


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