New Delhi: Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday said booking of train tickets will resume at around 1.7 lakh common service centres across the country from Friday.
Common Service Centres are physical facilities for delivering e-services of the government at rural and remote locations where availability of computers and internet is negligible or absent.
The minister also said that bookings will also resume at counters at specific stations over the next two to three days. "We are developing a protocol to identify the stations...we will also soon announce the resumption of more trains," Goyal said during a conversation with his party colleague and BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra.
The Railway Minister also praised Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath and Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani for their cooperation with the railways in running the Shramik Special trains and criticised West Bengal and Jharkhand for their non-cooperation.
Goyal also said within 2.5 hours of opening bookings for the 100 pairs of special trains that will run from June 1, 4 lakh passengers have booked tickets. People have also started reverse bookings to come back to work, he said.
Almost 1.50 lakh tickets were booked within two hours of opening the bookings for the 100 pairs of passenger trains that the railways will operationalise on June 1, officials said Thursday.
On Wednesday, railways issued a list of 100 pairs of trains that it will operate from June 1. The list included popular trains such as Durontos, Sampark Krantis, Jan Shatabdis and Poorva Express.
This is the second slew of special passenger services that marked the Railways graded restoration of its trains which were suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. "At 12:00 Hours, 73 trains were available in the system for booking. 1,49,025 tickets were booked having 2,90,510 passengers," said a railway spokesperson.
These trains will have both AC and non-AC classes and fully reserved coaches. The railways said these trains will be "special trains run on the pattern of regular trains", covering tier 2 cities and also major state capitals like Mumbai and Kolkata.
Officials said from now on, all such special trains will have both these categories to accommodate all classes of passengers. The trains that will run from June 1 include 17 Jan Shatabdi trains and five Duronto Express trains.
(With PTI inputs)