Highlights of Rail Budget 2012-13

An increase in passenger fares across all classes, more than 100 new trains, enhanced frequency or routes for many others, and plans to hire more than one lakh employees were some of the key Rail Budget proposals made on Wednesday.

Presenting the annual Rail Budget for the financial year 2012-13 in Parliament on Wednesday, Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi made following key proposals:

*Passenger fares to be hiked by 2 paise per km for suburban and ordinary second class travel; 3 paise per km for mail/ express second class; 5 paise per km for sleeper class; 10 paise per km for AC chair car/AC 3-tier and First Class; 15 paise per km for AC 2-tier and 30 paise per km for AC 1-tier.

*Minimum fare and platform tickets to cost Rs 5.

*75 new Express trains to be introduced, along with 21 new passenger services, nine DEMU services and 8 MEMU services trains.

*Route of 39 trains to be extended and frequency of 23 trains to be increased.

*Railways to hire more than one lakh employees in 2012-13; 80,000 persons hired last year.

*Indian Railways Stations Development Corp to be set up to re-develop stations and maintain them like airports.

*To set up an independent Railway Safety Authority as a statutory body.

* The open discharge toilets on trains to be replaced with green (bio) toilets.

*All unmanned level crossings to be abolished in next five years; To target zero deaths due to rail accidents.

*To provide rail connectivity to neighbouring countries, a new line from Agartala to Akura in Bangladesh to be set up.

*Double-Decker container trains to be introduced.

*Steps to improve cleanliness and hygiene on trains and stations within six months. A special house keeping body to be set up to take care of both stations and trains.

*New passenger services include escalators at major stations, alternative train accommodation for wait-listed passengers, laundry services, AC lounges, coin/currency operated ticket vending machines.

*Two new members, one for marketing, and other for safety, to be inducted into Railway Board.

*On board passenger displays indicating next halt station and expected arrival time to be introduced.

*Introduction of regional cuisine; Book-a-meal scheme to provide meals through SMS or email.

*Specially designed coaches for differently-able persons to be provided in each Mail/Express trains.

*Railway Tariff Regulatory Authority to be considered.

*National High Speed Rail Authority to be set up; Pre-feasibility studies on six high-speed corridors completed; study on Delhi-Jaipur-Ajmer-Jodhpur to be taken up in 2012-13.

*Wellness programme for railway staff at work places.

*Institution of ‘Rail Khel Ratna’ Award for 10 rail sports persons every year.

*A wagon factory at Sitapali, Odisha, rail coach factory at Palakkad, two additional new coach manufacturing units in Kutch (Gujarat) and Kolar (Karnataka); component factory at Shyamnagar (West Bengal); new coaching terminal at Naihati, the birth place of Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay.

*Freight loading of 1,025 MT targeted; 55 MT more than 2011—12; Passenger growth targeted at 5.4 per cent.

*Passenger earnings to increase to Rs 36,200 crore.

*Gross rail traffic targeted to increase by Rs 28,635 crore to Rs 1,32,552 crore in 2012—13.

Source: The Hindu

Time limit for Advance Reservations to be increased from 90 days to 120 days.

With reference to the Railway Board Commercial Circular No. 12 of 2012, it has been decided to increase the advance reservation period from 90 days to 120 days on experimental basis (excluding the date of Journey) w.e.f. 10.03.2012.

There will be no change in case of certain day time Express Trains like Taj Express, Gomti Express, etc. where lower time limits for advance reservations are at present in force. There will also be no change in case of the limit of 360 days for foreign tourists

Photo ID to be carried by Railway Passengers traveling with Reserved tickets

So far, Railway Passengers who are reserving their tickets through Internet were only required to carry one of the Photo IDs prescribed by Railway Department.

From 15th February, 2012, this procedure is made compulsory also for Railway Passengers traveling with Reserved Tickets booked through Computerized Ticket Counters at Railway Stations.  The bottom line is whoever travels in a train with a reserved train ticket need to carry an Identification document prescribed by Railways, since, entire railway reservation is computerized now.

The following is the press release issued in Press Information Bureau in this regard.

From  today onwards i.e. 15th February 2012, anyone of the passengers/the passenger booked on the ticket issued from computerized Passenger Reservation System (PRS counters) and Internet (i-ticket) undertaking journey in AC-3 tier, AC-2 tier, 1st AC, AC Chair Car and Executive Classes will have to carry one of the nine prescribed proofs of identity (in original) during the journey.  The passengers of these AC classes would be required to produce the Identity Card in original as and when required failing which all the passengers booked on that ticket will be treated as without ticket and charged accordingly.  However, the Identity Card (in original or its photocopy) will not be required at the time of purchase reserved AC tickets from PRS counters or i-ticket.  These instructions are valid for all categories of trains, with the above mentioned classes of travel.  The Ministry of Railways has taken this decision to prevent misuse of Reserved Train Tickets and reduce cases of travelling on transferred tickets, Ministry of Railways has decided that with effect.

In case of passengers who are automatically upgraded by the system from sleeper Class to Air-conditioned class and in case of passengers who are upgraded by on-board ticket checking staff on realization of difference of fare, the condition of carrying proof of identity during the journey will not be applicable.

These fresh instructions are in addition to the existing instructions under which the passengers with Tatkal tickets and e-tickets are already required to carry original proof of identity during the course of Railway journey.  In case of Tatkal tickets, self attested photocopy of the Identity Card is required at the time of purchase from the PRS counters or Identity Card details (Number etc.) are to be entered at the time of purchase from internet.
A message on this count will be indicated on the ticket issued in the above said classes through computerized PRS/I-ticket.

Center for Railway Information System (CRIS), an organization under Ministry of Railways, has been asked to make necessary provisions in the software.
The list of valid proofs of identity are as under:-
Ø                  Voter Photo Identity Card issued by Election Commission of India.
Ø                  Passport.
Ø                  PAN Card issued by Income Tax Department.
Ø                  Driving License issued by RTO.
Ø                  Photo Identity card having serial number issued by Central/State Government.
Ø                  Student Identity Card with Photograph issued by recognized School/College for their students.
Ø                  Nationalized Bank Passbook with Photograph.
Ø                  Credit Cards issued by Banks with laminated photograph.
Ø                  Unique Identification Card “Aadhaar”.

The scope of the term “photo identity card having serial number issued by Central/State Government” permissible under the scheme  is very wide and it covers a large number of photo identity cards, some of which are as under:

  • Pension Pay Orders (PPO)
  • Ration Card with photographs
  • Senior citizen cards.
  • Below Poverty Line (BPL) cards.
  • ESI Cards (with photograph) issued for taking treatment in ESI dispensaries.
  • CGHS Cards (with photograph) issued to individual family members of Central Government employees.

Source: Press Information Bureau

IRCTC launches website for booking rail tickets on mobile phone.

IRCTC launches a smarter way to book tickets. Now book your rail ticket -ANYWHERE ANYTIME through your Mobile Phones.

IRCTC brings to you the mobile website https://www.irctc.co.in/mobile with just a few clicks you can book your tickets using your Mobile Phones. IRCTC mobile website is convenient and easy to use, can be accessed from any browser enabled mobile having basic GPRS activated on phone.

The following features are available:

Book Ticket/ Enquiry – Book tickets by providing source and destination.

Booked History – Tickets whose Date of Journey is due will be visible.

Cancel Ticket – Cancel any of the tickets whose date of journey is due.

Browse the URL using your mobile and book tickets using any of your credit/debit card for payment.

Help for booking

1. Login to URL with your existing IRCTC user id and password.
2. Fill in details for plan my travel.
3. Select the train and continue the booking.
4. Use existing passenger list on add passengers.
5. Confirm booking details and pay through Credit/debit card to get successful booking.

Book Your Train Reservation Ticket While on Move through Mobile

Ministry of Railways

Book Your Train Reservation Ticket While on Move through Mobile Phone

No Need to Carry Ticket Print-Out, Mere Display of Message on Mobile is Sufficient during Travel

To bring further convenience to the rail users, Indian Railways through Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), a Public Sector Undertaking under the Ministry of Railway, has been offering the service of booking e-ticket over the mobile phone. After initial registration and downloading of suitable software on the mobile handset with internet facility, it will be quite easy for the mobile users to book a reserve ticket through their own mobile. After booking, the passenger will receive a reservation message with full details of the ticket including PNR, Train No, date of journey, class etc. This virtual message would be treated at par with the print-out of the e-ticket which at present is taken out by the passengers and is known as Electronic Reservation Slip (ERS).  Hence, with the virtual message, passengers would not be required to take a print-out of e-ticket to be carried with them. Showing the reservation message of the confirmed ticket on their mobile during travel will be sufficient. The detail procedure of booking through mobile which is also available on the IRCTC website namely www.irctc.co.in,   is as follows:-

.       Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) offers the service of booking electronic ticket (e-ticket) over the mobile to rail users.

·        IRCTC’s Mobile Rail Ticket booking services are based on the webservices model developed by IRCTC in order to enable the users of Mobile Phones to access the web based rail ticket reservation and enquiry services similar to www.irctc.co.in.

·        Application software has to be downloaded on to the mobile handset.  This software is provided by the respective service provider firms viz., NGPAY, PAYMATE and ATOM. The application can be downloaded from IRCTC website and also from various associates of IRCTC viz. NGPAY, ATOM, Paymate.  IRCTC is also likely to launch its mobile application shortly and the software will be downloadable from www.irctc.co.in.

·        These mobile applications are functional on most of the GPRS/Browser based mobile phones, from basic model to high end ones.

·        Internet is required on mobile phones to book tickets through mobile.

·        The Passenger has to register at the time of first transaction and thereafter book the ticket using his ID and password.

·        Whenever a passenger books a reserved ticket through Mobile phone, he will receive a message with full details of the ticket including PNR, Train No., date of journey, class, etc.  This virtual message would be treated at par with the print-out of the e-ticket which at present is taken out by the passengers and is known as Electronic Reservation Slip (ERS).  Hence, with this virtual message, passengers would not be required to have a printer with them to take a print-out of e-ticket to be carried with them.

·        The customer is charged ticket fare, IRCTC service charge and Agent service charge (Rs.10/- & Rs.20/- as per class of tickets) and applicable payment gateway charges.

·        The Service Charge is similar to e-tickets Rs.10/- for SL class and Rs.20/- for other higher class.

·        All the rules applicable to e-tickets are also applicable to the reserved tickets booked through Mobile phones except that in this case, the passenger can also show the virtual message received on mobile instead of carrying ERS.

·        More than a thousand users presently are availing this facility everyday.

Source:PIB

Press release of Railways on new tatkal booking scheme effective from 21 Nov 2011.

To ensure the reserved accommodation in trains to the passengers, who need to travel by trains within a very short notice due to emergency, Shri Dinesh Trivedi, Hon’ble Minister for Railways has advised to implement new Tatkal booking scheme on and from Monday (tomorrow), 21 November 2011. This Tatkal booking facility is to be introduced to eliminate the possibility of booking of tickets by touts/miscreants through Tatkal scheme and sell to the passengers in emergency, against high premium. Booking procedure through new Tatkal scheme is given below:-

The Advance Reservation Period (ARP) of Tatkal scheme is reduced from two days to one day excluding the day of journey from the train originating station w.e.f Monday, 21 November 2011. For example, if a train is to depart from the originating station on the second of the month, the Tatkal quota for that particular train shall open at 08.00 hrs. on the first of the month.

i) Agents /Rail Travel Service Agencies (RTSAs) will not be allowed booking Tatkal tickets at the counters between 08.00 hrs. and 10.00 hrs. on the opening day of Tatkal Advance Reservation Facility for booking with train starting date falling beyond 22/11/2011. RTSA opted Tatkal booking in normal counters also will not be allowed between 08.00 hrs and 10.00 hrs. on the opening day of Tatkal for booking with train starting date falling beyond 22 November 2011.

ii) System will allow to book only maximum 4 passengers in a Tatkal booking w.e.f 21/11/2011.

iii) Tatkal tickets shall be issued only on production of one of the eight prescribed proofs of identity as per procedure explained below:-

a) For this purpose, a self-attested photocopy of the proof of identity of any one passenger should be attached to the requisition slip.

b) The details of the identity proof will be captured by the system and indicated on the reserved tickets as well on the reservation chart. It will not be mandatory for the passenger(s) to go to the counter to book the Tatkal ticket, however, the proof will have to be sent in the aforementioned manner.

c) During the journey, the passenger, whose identity card number has been indicated on the ticket, will have to produce original proof of identity indicated on the ticket, failing which all the passengers booked on the ticket shall be treated as travelling without ticket and charged accordingly. Indication will come on the ticket regarding carrying the same original proof of identity during the journey, as indicated on the ticket.

d) If the passenger whose identity card number is indicated on the ticket is not travelling, all other passengers booked on that ticket, if found travelling in train, will be treated as travelling without ticket and charged accordingly.

e) For booking done on more than one passenger, system will allow to input identification numbers passenger-wise in case if identification proofs are submitted by the concerned passengers. Input identification card information will be printed passenger-wise on the tickets as well as on the reservation chart. In such cases, in case of non-travelling of one of the passengers whose proof of identity has been indicated, other passenger(s) can undertake the journey on production of original proof of identity by the other passenger(s) whose proof of identity has been indicated on the ticket as well as on the reservation chart

f) . No refund will be granted on cancellation of Tatkal confirmed tickets subject to the exception such as cancellation of trains/late running of trains for more than 3 hours, etc.

g) Cameras will be installed at the ticket counters to maintain stricter vigilance.

Source: PTI