Monday, July 2, 2012

CCTVs to check booking clerks

MUMBAI: The ministry of railways will incorporate several safety measures from July 10 to ensure that your tatkal booking is transparent and agents/touts are not able to jump queues and buy tickets on fake names.Anil Kumar Saxena, additional DG (PR), railway ministry, said, "Apart from opening the tatkal bookings two hours late, which is at 10am instead of 8am, there will be stringent checks at our booking counters. We will ensure that bona fide passengers waiting in the exclusive queue for tatkal get the tickets on a first-come, first-served basis."

To begin with, the railways plan to install CCTVs to monitor the movement of every booking clerk and keep an eye on them throughout the booking process. There will be inspections on the clerks by a special vigil squad who will monitor the tatkal bookings and also keep an eye on passengers waiting in queue. Touts and agents will be kept at bay, an official said.
As per the new rule which was reported in TOI on June 30, booking clerks will not be allowed to use any cellphones when they are on the job. Even officials on the booking desks could face restrictions on carrying cellphones when they are at the centres. The process of setting up special tatkal counters has already begun on both the Western and Central Railway passenger reservation centres. "These counters will ensure there is no clash between those buying tickets on regular queues (120 days prior to travel date of journey) and those buying tatkal tickets. As per the rule, the tatkal tickets will be issued from the originating station at 10am one day prior to the day of the journey. No authorized agents, including agents of the Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), rail travellers' service agents (RTSAs) and rail tourism agents(RTAs) will be allowed to book tatkal tickets from 10am to noon.
Among other measures, there is a plan to make ID cards compulsory for all reservations and changes in internet bookings to ensure that only one tatkal booking is allowed for a passenger. Officials said there will be deployment of security officials to prevent any law and order problem during the bookings. Security personnel will also drive away touts from the reservation centres and not allow them to sleep overnight, especially after midnight. At present, for tatkal bookings, agents usually sleep in front of the counters all night and ensure that they are among the first ten in queue. This affects bona fide commuters who want to book without the help of agents.
The RPF has also begun a drive against touts., with officials nabbing three touts and 12 others from reservation centres at Andheri, Bandra Terminus and Borivli on Saturday.


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