Indian Railways intend to restart linen services for passengers

Although the pandemic has had a dramatic effect on the laundry industry as a whole, it certainly struck Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) laundries that work in partnership with the Indian Railways. These laundry operators — who normally wash several tonnes of the linen supplied to passengers daily — completely lost their incomes from the moment lockdown was enforced.

The Railways stopped the supply of passenger linen out of fear that the linen might be transmitting the coronavirus between passengers. However, this fear has been proven as unfounded and the Indian Railways have announced their willingness to restart linen services in trains. The company’s Chief Rolling Stock Engineer has asked all its divisions to prepare themselves and submit an action plan to resume the service.

Some of the preparations required are a guaranteed availability of adequate linen based on present train service, checks on stored linen for foul smells and stains, to be washed before put back into service. Also, departmental mechanised laundry should be checked and functioning ensured. In short, BOOT laundries are being checked for readiness to restart operations.