|Integrated Unreserved Ticketing System-cum-Passenger Reservation Service Centre opened at Vaniyambadi|
VANIYAMBADI: The Railways will soon be introducing the facility of train ticket reservation in post offices, with a view to minimising queues in the passenger reservation service (PRS) centres. It would also provide additional facilities for advance booking of train tickets, according to the Union Minister of State for Railways R. Velu.
Inaugurating the Integrated Unreserved Ticketing System (UTS)-cum-Passenger Reservation Service (PRS) Centre at the Vaniyambadi station on Thursday, Mr. Velu said only eight per cent of passengers reserved tickets in advance. When computerised passenger reservation system was introduced in 1987, the facility of advance reservation was available only for 20 trains. But today, the facility was available for 90 per cent of the trains.
Mr. Velu said five crore people were travelling in trains every day throughout the country.
There were 116 UTS centres and 73 integrated UTS-cum-PRS centres in Tamil Nadu. The Railways had taken steps to minimise queues in the PRS centres by introducing e-ticketing and I-ticketing.
“Passengers can sit in their houses and reserve tickets through Internet if they have credit/debit cards,” he said. Automatic ticket vending machines had also been introduced in the stations to purchase unreserved tickets through smart cards.
Mr. Velu said a ‘Garib Rath’ would be introduced shortly between Bangalore and Puducherry, via Vriddachalam and Tindivanam. A train had been introduced between Vriddachalam and Salem.
Responding to the plea of V. Sivajiganesan, municipal chairman, Vaniyambadi, for providing roofs at platforms and high-mast lights in the Vaniyambadi station, Mr. Velu said he had asked the Divisional Railway Manager (DRM), Chennai Division, S.K. Kulshrestha, to take immediate steps .
To the plea of Tirupattur MLA T.K. Raja for the stoppage of Brindavan Express in Vaniyambadi, Mr. Velu said factors such as the time taken for the slow down and acceleration of the train during the arrival and departure at a station, and the grievances of long-distance passengers about the increased running time taken by the superfast trains owing to the increase in the number of halts have to be taken into consideration before introducing more halts for such trains.
However, more trains could be operated once automatic signals were put in place to cover more stations in the Chennai-Bangalore and Chennai-Coimbatore routes he said.
K.V. Narayana Das, Chief Commercial Manager, Southern Railway said the UTS-cum-PRS centres introduced in the stations in Tamil Nadu are the first of their kind in the Southern Railway.
Passenger traffic accounted for 58 per cent of the railway earnings, and 95 per cent of the passenger traffic earnings came from UTS/PRS centres.
The Railways are planning to proliferate the UTS centres. Out of the 449 UTS centres to be set up in the Southern Railway, 320 would be in Tamil Nadu.
There has been a growth in passenger traffic following the opening of PRS/UTS centres, he said.
The DRM Chennai, S.K. Kulshrestha, welcomed the gathering. S.K. Gupta, Additional DRM, Chennai, proposed a vote of thanks.
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