After the CAG report pointed out to the unhygienic condition of blankets being used in AC coaches in Indian Railways, the railway officials are planning to introduce lightweight, designer blankets to replace the existing heavy textured blankets. The railways will also increase the frequency of washing the blankets. The CAG report had pointed out that the blankets were not washed for even 6 months. It was quite a gross revelation since passengers use the blankets very carelessly and often it falls on the floor and may also get trampled upon. And with no wash for six months, it’s easy to imagine the state of the blanket. It is likely that such unwashed blankets are crawling with dangerous bugs and parasites that can cause a host of health problems. There are many people who have reported that they had fallen sick after their train journey.
The new lightweight, designer blankets will be introduced in a phased manner and eventually they will replace all the existing heavyset blankets. The heavy blankets currently used in Indian railways are difficult to clean and manage. The new lightweight blankets would be easily manageable by the train staff. Already, the railways have introduced some of these blankets along some routes as part of a pilot project. Railways have also started using blanket covers on some of the trains, as part of the cleanliness drive.