My Travel Experience: From Washington to Bihar


A Journey with Highs and Lows

As an NRI living in the US, my visit to India this summer was filled with anticipation and excitement. I planned to stay for a month, starting from June 16th. My journey began from Washington to Delhi via London, and I must say, the international travel experience was smooth and pleasant.

Delhi to Siwan: The Anticipation

After reaching Delhi, my next destination was my village in Bihar. Yes, there are Biharis living in the US, and I am one of them! I was eager to see my family and visit my hometown. With all the recent developments and the ambitious claims of making India the 5th global economy, aspiring to be the 3rd, I was curious to see the improvements firsthand.

The Reality of Indian Railways

My train journey from Delhi to Siwan was scheduled for June 22nd on a summer special train. The train was supposed to depart at 10:30 PM, and I reached the station an hour early, around 9:30 PM. However, I soon learned that the train was delayed by two hours, despite it being the source station. This information would have been useful beforehand, allowing me to adjust my plans accordingly.

Finally, the train departed three hours late, at 1:30 AM. Waiting on the platform with kids until then was quite a challenge. The reality of this situation stood in stark contrast to the grand visions of bullet trains and the much-publicized Vande Bharat trains.

Onboard Woes

Once onboard, the issues continued. The air conditioning was not functioning correctly, and the bathrooms were dirty and stinking. My complaints to the authorities were met with a frustrating loop of forwards to different departments, with no resolution in sight. To add to the inconvenience, the train kept getting delayed further, and we reached our destination a full 12 hours late.

A Tale of Two Experiences

While my train journey was far from ideal, I must commend the infrastructure improvements I witnessed elsewhere. The expressways and flights I traveled on during my visit were outstanding. Kudos to the departments responsible for these developments! It is clear that significant progress is being made in some areas.

A Call for Change

However, the disparity between the promises of a modern railway system and the actual experience on the ground is concerning. As India aspires to be a global economic powerhouse, it is crucial to ensure that our infrastructure, including the railways, matches these aspirations. Cleanliness, punctuality, and proper facilities are basic expectations that need to be met.


Traveling by train should be a pleasant experience, not a struggle. I hope that the authorities take note of these issues and work towards improving the railway system. My journey, with its highs and lows, highlighted the areas where progress is needed and where commendable work has already been done. Here’s hoping for positive changes in the railway system soon!