Minister of Railways Piyush Goyal talked on a host of issues.

Excerpts:

On passenger amenities in trains

Keeping in view the passenger safety and comfort, Indian Railways operates almost all Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express services with LHB rakes which have better speed potential and safety features. Besides, systems are in place to ensure that train coaches are given stipulated maintenance schedules and unsafe coaches are not allowed in passenger train service. Railways are Implementing Automatic Train Protection (ATP) Systems in selected sections. These systems have the facility of displaying movement authority in front of the Loco Pilot in the cab. Railways are also developing TCAS, an automatic train protection system being developed in association with 3 Indian manufacturers. The system has been installed on Lingampalli-Vikrabad-Wadi, Vikrabad-Bidar section (250 RKMs) on SCR.

On managing crowd in trains

In order to enhance passenger convenience, a tool to predict the probability of waitlisted ticket getting confirmed at the time of booking as well as during PNR enquiry of waitlisted ticket has been integrated with IRCTC website. Further, with a view to providing confirmed accommodation to waiting list passengers and to ensure optimal utilization of available accommodation, a scheme known as Alternate Train Accommodation (ATAS) known as “VIKALP” has been introduced to cover all types of trains on all sectors.

On maintaining sanitation in trains and stations

Railways have begun mechanized cleaning of train coaches. On Board Housekeeping Service (OBHS) has been provided in nearly 1080 pairs of trains including Rajdhani, Shatabdi and other important long distance Mail/Express trains for cleaning of coach toilets, doorways, aisles and passenger compartments during the run of the trains. Nearly 2,05,000 bio-toilets have been fitted on around 56,700 coaches.

On measures to curb touting

During festivals, summer vacations, holidays etc. when demand exceeds availability, some attempts to misuse reservation system do come to notice. IIRCTC has put several checks including creation of only one IRCTC User ID on a given mobile number and email ID. It has set a limit of booking six railway tickets by an individual user in a month.

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