Alert! IRCTC Train Tickets To Go Costlier As Indian Railways Plans To Restore Service Charges
Train tickets book online through Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) might become costlier as the Indian Railways is has decided to bring back the service charges levied on e-tickets.
In a letter dated August 3, the Board has said the IRCTC, railways ticketing and tourism arm, had made a "detailed case" for the restoration of service charge on booking of e-ticket and the matter has been examined by the 'competent authority'. It further said the Finance Ministry has contended that the scheme of waiving of service charges was a temporary one and that the railway ministry could begin charging e-tickets.
"In view of the advice given by the Ministry of Finance, the competent authority has decided that IRCTC may take a suitable decision on the imposition/restoration of convenience fee/service charges and the quantum to be levied," the letter added. However, the letter did not clarified whether the service charges levied on the IRCTC e-tickets will be restored to the previous amount. IRCTC is yet to receive any official communique on the final amount that would be charged to the passengers.
In a move which was announced last month to cut the significant losses Indian Railways suffers on an annual basis, the Railway Ministry will passengers to give up their ‘ticket subsidy’ in the first AC (air conditioned), second AC and sleeper class segments. Known as the 'Give It Up' Campaign, the inspire comparatively well-off passengers to pay close to 70 per cent more for their tickets, depending on the ticket category.
As per recent data, Indian Railways is running at a loss of over Rs 42,000 crore in the passenger segment. Currently, Indian Railways, on an average, collects only 53 per cent of the cost of passengers transport operations from tickets and the remaining 47 per cent is given to them as subsidy. The official said the idea was to urge passengers to give up the subsidy on the train tickets -- like people were given the option of renouncing the subsidy on liquified petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders.
Railways subsidy, however, is different than Modi government's flagship Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMLA) as here the benefit of the subsidy will not be transferred to the citizen and rather it will be utilised to build a better and a modern rail system across the country. However, the Ministry of Railways has made it clear that giving up of subsidy will not be compulsory and passengers will have the option of buying the train ticket with or without subsidy.
Railways subsidy, however, is different than Modi government's flagship Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMLA) as here the benefit of the subsidy will not be transferred to the citizen and rather it will be utilised to build a better and a modern rail system across the country.
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