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Sharell Cook

New Menu Item on Indian Railways: Rat Biryani

By January 30, 2013

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Rat.Getty Images/Per-Eric Berglund

It's no secret that the quality of food served on Indian Railways trains has been declining for a while now. However, it seems that it's reached a new (and horrific!) low.

According to this news report, a passenger recently found a cooked rat in his veg biryani aboard the Sarvodaya Express. What makes it even worse is that the passenger was a strict vegetarian Gujarati, who was returning from a pilgrimage.   Apparently, hundreds of other pilgrims had also ordered the biryani.

It's alarming to say the least! I usually eat Indian Railways food on the train, but I don't think I'll be doing so in future.

Indian Railways introduced a complaint line for its catering service a few years ago.  However, this news report of a newly introduced toll-free complaint line gives a different number. It now seems to be 1800-111-321. The previous number was 1800-111-139.  Maybe the old complaint line was so inundated with calls, Indian Railways had to add another one!

Do you have any bad experiences of Indian Railways food to share?

January 30, 2013 at 4:52 am
(1) kanu says:

It’s really disgusting to read about this. I truly agree with you on this that the quality of travelling in passenger trains is declining.

But on the other hand, there are trains that redefine the luxurious standards of hospitality. India Luxury Train are a group of train franchise allowing tourists a great opportunity of experiencing the majestic hospitality.

January 30, 2013 at 4:54 am
(2) Uday says:

its very bad news for every traveller, this news down the reputation of Incredible India

January 31, 2013 at 11:26 am
(3) Gaurav Pruthi says:

ehh. . . . . phew…me too strict vegetarian and good bye pantry cars :(

January 31, 2013 at 2:13 pm
(4) Hami says:

Im surprised that Ms Cook doesn’t get a tummy ache after eating railway food!!

February 2, 2013 at 8:48 am
(5) goindia says:

Thankfully Ms Cook has a very strong stomach. ;-) (Although roadside dhaba food has on occasion been disagreeable). There are limits though!

February 2, 2013 at 9:09 pm
(6) kirti says:

I have seen this several times ,i travel often from Bangalore to Manmad by train but hardly dare to eat pantry food. I carry food from home ,if not possible i order through http://merafoodchoice.com/ which I trust !

February 8, 2013 at 2:47 am
(7) Rahul says:

I agree that this is very disgusting. But, Should it be published on about.com? because it really hurts my country or any country image, if it is happened in other as well.

I am disappointed by railways and about.com as well.

February 8, 2013 at 4:26 am
(8) goindia says:

Hi Rahul, I expected that publishing the post may offend someone. However, in the interests of tourist hygiene and health safety, I feel it’s important that people are made aware of the matter so that they can make the decision to get their food elsewhere if they wish. Personally, I usually eat Indian Railways food. This concerns me enough to buy food from the stations or take my own food in future though.

September 6, 2013 at 6:44 am
(9) mousumi chattopadhyay says:

I never forgot my traumatic experience of railway pantry meals of 31st aug13 Howrah-Chennai mail & 1st sep13 Chennai -Howrah mail.they served non veg meal-rice,dal,chicken,pickle @₹110.with out d
card & drinking water.fish meal contains dal,fish,rice,pickle @₹112
i don’t know the above meals are railway approved meals or their self created,lf so should take immediate action against the pantry car vendors,if not i think it will show that the common middle class people are the soft target of “corruption tools”

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