Like flight attendants, railway catering staff will now carry trash bags to collect waste from passengers in all trains after meals, Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani has instructed officials. The railways are increasingly adopting the airline model -- from its food to its vacuum toilets -- to give passengers airline-like comforts.
In a meeting with division-level officers and board members on July 17, Lohani said that to maintain cleanliness in trains, pantry staff should collect trash in a bag after meals are served, "as done in airlines".
"Meal plates are usually kept under the seats by passengers after eating and the pantry staff take away those by stacking one on top of the other. Sometimes the leftover contents spill and fall on the floor the coaches. Also, passengers keep sundry items like banana peals, packets and other such things on the berths or on the floor," an official said.
"Under this system, the pantry staff, just like airlines, will carry a bag to every passenger who can put their trays, plates or any other trash in it," the official said.
In some airlines, on-board staffers carry trash bags to every passenger before landing of the flight to put their waste in those bags, so that the need for a major cleanup before the aircraft is ready to seat the next set of passengers is minimised.
Lohani has also said that in those trains where there is no pantry, on-board housekeeping staff should keep such trash bags.
Trash bags will now be included in regular contracts with caterers, he has said.