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Change in ticketing policy sought in Railway Budget

Press Trust Of India

First published: February 17, 2016, 12:57 PM IST | Updated: February 17, 2016
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Change in ticketing policy sought in Railway Budget

New Delhi: Changes in ticketing policy such as 50 per cent refund on Tatkal cancellations and no limit in ticket bookings for travellers are some of the suggestions made by the people to be incorporated in Railway Budget 2016-17 in a survey.

Citizens have also raised concerns over bribes taken by TTEs and misuse of emergency quota and sought it to be addressed in the survey called "Make Railways Better" conducted by LocalCircle.

Approximately 63 per cent of the citizens surveyed have experienced or observed TTEs taking bribes for giving seats/ticketless travel.

"This is an area where citizens are keen that through policies, processes and systemic changes the Railways must address it otherwise the bribes taken by TTEs translate into revenue loss for the organisation," according to the online poll participated by about 150,000 citizens.

About 17 per cent of the citizens have indicated that in case of last minute travel need, they will approach a tout or agent while another 9 per cent indicated that they will prefer to approach someone in railways to secure the ticket under special quotas. 62 per cent said they preferred to use the IRCTC website while 12 per cent prefer going to the railway reservation counter.

According to the survey, people wanted a transparent system for emergency and VIP seat allocation and guidelines need to be issued defining an emergency and a VIP. They have suggested this quota should be cut down by 75 per cent.

Suggesting curb in tout involvement in ticketing, the survey has advocated for deployment GRP and RPF to keep a strict vigil on the stations and reservation counters to prevent tout operation beside installation of CCTV cameras strategically around the booking windows to deter unscrupulous elements in illegal ticketing.

Respondents in the survey has suggested for 50 per cent refund should be given on Tatkal ticket cancellation six hours before departure and a quota for online Tatkal bookings should be introduced.

There are suggestions for allotment of lower/middle berths for senior citizens and women with young kids and no limit should be put on booking tickets for self as first traveller.

India's largest citizen engagement platform announced that citizens have collectively appreciated Ministry of Railways incorporating many of the citizen inputs in the area of ticketing via Rail Budget 2015 and implementing them during the course of the year.

Citizens believe that the IRCTC website performance has improved and some of the tout leakages have been addressed in 2015, however, more citizen oriented policies, processes and systems are needed to make Railway Ticketing citizen oriented.

Below are the top ticketing priorities from citizens for Rail Budget 2016.

The prioritization exercise and survey on ticketing was done in a community of more than 150,000 citizens who are part of the circle called Make Railways Better. Over 10 structure online citizen consultations were conducted in the area of Ticketing and top priorities were identified subsequently with a high consensus rate of 95 per cent.

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