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Soon, Online Booking for Train Tickets to Get Costlier Due to Service Charge: Report

The report added that IRCTC was to be reimbursed around Rs 88 crore by the Ministry of Finance but even that wasn't sufficient to cover their operation costs.

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Updated:August 9, 2019, 9:35 AM IST
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Soon, Online Booking for Train Tickets to Get Costlier Due to Service Charge: Report
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Online reservation for train journeys will soon get costlier. The service charge which was earlier pulled back is all set to be reintroduced for online reservations.

According to a report in Mumbai Mirror, a Railway Ministry letter dated August 3, has announced the service charge will soon be levied once again for operation costs, including after sale service and marketing. Earlier, service charge for sleeper class was Rs 20 while one had to to shell Rs 40 extra for AC compartment reservation.

Notably, the charge for e-tickets was already there till November 2016, before demonetisation. Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) used the money to fund its ticketing system.

According to the report, the Ministry of Finance advised Railways to discontinue charge promising that the department's operation costs will be reimbursed. However, on July 19 this year the MoF informed railways in writing that the reimbursement of operation costs for e-ticketing to IRCTC was a "temporary arrangement" for a "limited period of time".

IRCTC's revenue took a big hit since initially the directive was to not levy service charges till June 2017 but the timeline has been extended multiple times and it still remains to be levied.

The report added that IRCTC was to be reimbursed around Rs 88 crore by the Ministry of Finance but even that wasn't sufficient to cover their operation costs.

The letter by B S Kiran, the joint director traffic commercial (general) of the Railway Board further empowers Railways to restore the service charge and the quantum to be levied.

The report further said that the matter will be taken up by the directors of IRCTC and the amount will, in all probability, be the same as before.

Railway officials told Mumbai Mirror that the restoration of service charges on e-tickets will generate at least Rs 200 crore, which is needed in meeting increasing costs of maintaining the IRCTC website and keeping all safeguard in place and dissuading people from booking train tickets illegally.

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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