Minister of Railways launches three more Budget Announcement 2016-17 namely (1) Extension of newly introduced cancellation facility for PRS counter tickets through 139 or IRCTC website for all confirmed, RAC and waitlisted PRS Counter tickets (2) Release of Handout on ‘Railway initiatives for Ease of Doing Business’ and Nomination of ‘Key Customer Managers’ and (3) Flagging off of Roll-On-Roll-Off (Ro-Ro) train Ex.-Bihta to Turki in Bihar.
As a part of the Rail Budget Announcements of 2016-17, Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhkar Prabhu in a programme held today i.e. 25.05.2016 at Rail Bhawan inaugurated three important activities which are budget announcements namely (i) Extension of newly introduced cancellation facility for PRS counter tickets through 139 or IRCTC website for all confirmed, RAC and waitlisted PRS Counter tickets (ii) Release of Handout on ‘Railway initiatives for Ease of Doing Business’ and Nomination of ‘Key Customer Managers’ (iii) Flagging off of Roll-On-Roll-Off(Ro-Ro) train Ex.-Bihta to Turki in Bihar. Manoj Sinha, Minister of State for Railway was specially present to grace the occasion. Member Traffic, Railway Board, Mohd. Jamshed and other Board Members were present on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion about these services, Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, said that Railways has been working vigorously to implement its budget announcement in order to give best passenger amenities and infrastructural development to the country. He said that whereas the extension of facility of cancellation through 139 or IRCTC website will give a huge relief to the passengers; the other two services will attract the stakeholders and the freight will now get the attention which it deserves. He said that the Ro-Ro train Ex.-Bihta to Turki in Bihar is environment friendly which will reduce carbon emission. Railway Minister said that now the Railways efforts are being appreciated throughout the country and the Railway will bring many more reforms in the near future.
Indian Railways was in a shambles when Suresh Prabhu took charge as minister in November 2014. Cut to 2016 and the narrative has shifted to high-speed trains, Wi-Fi broadband services at stations and use of social media to improve passenger amenities. The ministry has managed to place Rs 40,000 crore of contracts for the much-awaited diesel and electric locomotive factories, secure Rs 5 lakh crore long-term funding from Life Insurance Corporation and begin work on a Rs 98,000-crore first bullet train project with Japanese loans. “A major achievement Prabhu will be known for in the first two years is putting back on rails many of the crucial but incomplete tasks that were pending for a long time. Work has gained momentum on locomotive factories and the Dedicated Freight Corridor project,” said Vishwas Udgirkar, senior director, Deloitte. Through the locomotive factories, the government has cleared the pitch for the first foreign direct investment in the sector.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha, said that the new reforms being introduced by Railways has necessarily provided a great relief to the railway passengers. He said that now the Railways, which is backbone of the country, is working extra mile for the upliftment of economic and social development of the country.
Salient Features Of the Schemes Launched : –
CANCELLATION OF PRS COUNTER TICKETS (FULLY CONFIRMED/RAC/WAITLISTED) THROUGH IRCTC WEBSITE OR THROUGH 139
To facilitate passengers with PRS counter tickets to cancel their tickets through within the prescribed time limit as per Refund Rule 2015 facility for cancellation of such tickets through IRCTC website (www.irctc.co.in) / 139 (by IVRS and SMS).
A pilot project was inaugurated by Hon’ble MR on 29th April,2016, for cancellation of fully confirmed PRS counter tickets. The pilot was restricted to cancellation of tickets for trains scheduled to depart within the next 24 hours. Now this facility is being extended to all confirmed tickets without any time limit and also for RAC and Waitlisted tickets with effect from 26thMay, 2016.
- Cancellation will be permitted in normal circumstances only and not in case of late running of trains/cancellation of trains etc.,
- This facility shall be available only in case the mobile number has been given at the time of booking the ticket.
- Online cancellation or cancellation through 139 shall be permitted only upto 4 hours before the scheduled departure of the train in case of confirmed tickets and upto half an hour before the scheduled departure of the train in case of RAC/Waitlisted tickets.
- Refund of fare amount shall be collected only at the journey commencing station or nearby satellite PRS locations defined by Zonal Railway as under:-
(a) During first two hours of the opening of PRS counters on the next day for the tickets for the trains whose scheduled departure time is between 1801 hours and 0600 hours.
(b) Upto 4 hours after the scheduled departure of the train during the working hours of PRS counters/current counters/special counters where cancellation is permitted round the clock on the tickets for the trains whose scheduled departure time is between 0601 hours and 1800 hours.
(c) No refund of amount would be given after the above mentioned prescribed time limit.
Procedure For Cancellation through IRCTC website:
* A new page will be given on IRCTC website (www.irctc.co.in) without any login for purpose of cancellation of PRS counter tickets.
* Passenger will be asked to enter PNR number & Train number on IRCTC website along with captcha.
* The details entered by passenger shall be validated and an OTP will be sent to the passenger on his mobile no. given at the time of booking the ticket. The OTP received on the mobile will be entered by the passenger in the web page and it will be validated by the system.
* After receiving the confirmation OTP number from the passenger, full cancellation of PNR will be done and PNR will be marked as Cancelled but not refunded in the system. Seat/berth will be released and would be made available for booking both at PRS & IRCTC Website. Refund amount due will also be displayed to the passenger on the website.
* An SMS will be sent to the passenger with PNR and fare details. Sample format: ”Your ticket has been cancelled. PNR, xxxxxx, Amt,xxxxx. Refund of fare amount shall be collected only at the journey commencing station or nearby satellite PRS locations as per the notified time”.
* All the privilege/duty pass/PTOs/complimentary pass tickets shall be allowed to be cancelled through website or through 139.
* All types of PNRs including i-tickets (after printing) and system tickets booked across counter/post office/YTSK/Go India terminals/Bank terminals etc.’ will be allowed to be cancelled on website except the following:
(a). Circular Journey tickets and onwards tickets booked against CJT.
(b). Foreign tourists PNRs against which berth allotment has been done
(c). ATAS generated new PNR
(d). Duplicate ticket.
(e). Cluster ticket and pre-bought ticket.
Procedure for Cancellation through 139:
Now Rail Ticket booked through Railway Reservation counter can be cancelled through Railway Enquiry 139. Service is available on:
(a). 139 IVR with Agent Assistance
(b). 139 SMS Service
(a). Procedure to cancel through 139 IVR
(i). Customer will call on 139 and select 6th Option from IVR main menu.
(ii). IVR will ask whether it is Counter Ticket or E- Ticket. Press 1 for Counter Ticket or Press 2 for E-Ticket.
(iii). In case customer selects E-Ticket option, IVR will play a message “Currently ticket booked through Railway Reservation Counter can be cancelled through 139. Press 8 to go back to main menu”
- Once customer selects Counter Ticket option, call will be transferred to agent for cancellation.
- Agent will ask below mentioned information from customer to process the cancellation.
- PNR Number
- Train Number
- Agent will retrieve ticket information from back end and confirm with customer.
- After ticket details confirmation, agent will click on “Generate OTP” button to generate the OTP. System will validate the calling number of customer with the number mentioned in ticket details at the back end.
- If mobile number validation fails, agent will advise the customer to call from same number which are mentioned in ticket details. If number is successfully validated, OTP will be delivered on passenger’s mobile number which he would convey to agent.
- Agent will enter OTP on CRM and will click “Submit” button to process the cancellation. Ticket will be cancelled and refundable amount will be display on agent screen. Agent will communicate the same refundable amount to customer.
- Customer have to collect the permissible refundable amount across the PRS counter within the prescribed time limit.
(b) Cancellation through SMS sent to 139:
(i). User has to send PNR Number & Train Number to 139 in below mentioned syntax:
CANCEL<PNR Number><Train Number> to 139
Example: CANCEL 2303529769 12420
(ii). User will get below response from 139 after mobile number verification:
“Dear User, We have received cancellation request against PNR number 2303529769, OTP against this request is 123456. To confirm the ticket cancellation send SMS OTP 123456 to 139.
(iii). User has to send given OTP back to 139 for second level of confirmation.
OTP <OTP received on Passenger Mobile Number> to 139
Example: OTP 123456
User will get below response from 139:
“Dear User, Your ticket with PNR number 2303529769 has been cancelled, refundable amount is Rs. —-.”
(iv) Passenger has to collect the permissible refundable amount within prescribed time limit across the PRS counter.
EASE OF DOING BUSINESS
Ease of doing business means an environment where customer is not frightened with Government policies, a regime where rules are simplified, predictable and transparent. Policy makers interact with consumer of those policies to take their feed back and try to simplify, improved policies. Based on these principles, Ministry of Railways went through the suggestions given by stakeholders, held brain storming sessions of senior executives and then incorporated that suggestions while taking initiatives as announced under Railway Budget. Minister of Railways emphasized on ease of doing business during his Budget Speech 2016-17.
Accordingly, Ministry of Railways has taken initiatives inter-alia withdrawal of dual freight policy of Iron Ore; withdrawal of port congestion charge; withdrawal of busy season charge; Merry-go-round system; two/multi point and mini rake in all kinds of covered wagons; mini rakes allowed up to 600 kms (from earlier 400 kms.); automatic freight rebate scheme in traditional empty flow direction; Roll-on-Roll-off service etc.
These initiatives are going to help industries, in lowering input cost on account of transportation. Some more initiatives are in pipeline which will further benefit our customers. Ministry of Railways is going to nominate Key Customer Managers who will take care of specific industry.
A process of structured dialogue called “SAMVAD” between customers and top Railway authorities has been initiated under which Railways will take continuous feedback from customers. The “SAMVAD’ at All India level will be quarterly. At Zonal level, it will be bi-monthly. This is a big step in the direction of “Ease of doing Business”.
NOMINATION OF KEY CUSTOMER MANAGERS
While presenting Railway Budget for the year 2016-17, Minister of Railways in his Budget Speech has announced that ‘Key Customer Managers’ will be nominated to liaison with our major freight stakeholders. They would serve as a single point of contact for all communication and redressal with these key customers.’
‘Nurturing Customers’ through key customer managers have been envisaged for effective communication and redressal of issues pertaining to our invaluable freight customers. The purpose of ‘Key Customer Manager’ is to provide an appropriate mechanism to the major freight customers/ stakeholders to redress their day-to-day problems/ grievance. There exist 10 major group of commodities in the freight basket of Indian Railway viz.- Coal, Iron Ore, Raw Material for Steel Plants (RMSP), Steel, Foodgrain, Fertiliser, Cement, POL, Container and Other Commodities. For each commodity, ‘Key Customer Managers’ is being for nominated.
ROLL-ON ROLL-OFF SERVICE
While presenting Railway Budget for the year 2016-17, Minister of Railways has announced that a new delivery models e.g., Roll-on Roll-off will be launched. Infrastructure requirements have been assessed to re-capture that traffic through either containerization or new delivery models e.g., Roll-on Roll-off.
Recently, Rail bridge over River Ganges near Patna i.e. Digha Rail Bridge has been commissioned. After consultation with the truck operators, who are transporting sand in truck from North Bihar to South Bihar through road bridges like Mahatma Gandhi Setu, Vikramshila Setu etc., it has been decided to operate RO-RO service across Digha Bridge. Under this scheme, loaded trucks would be moved on the flat rakes (modified BOXN and BRN rakes) to avoid congestion on roads across Ganges. To start with, this service is being introduced from Bihta (Private Freight Terminal) to Turki station, Muzaffarpur district covering a distance of 88 kms. In a rake, approximately 44 loaded/ empty trucks will be moved. A rake will perform 3 trips per day.
It has been decided to inaugurate 1st train of Roll-on Roll-off service on Bihta to Turki station.
The service will be extended to cover more commodities and destinations in future. In the long run, this initiative would save a lot of Forex spent on fuel and would indirectly reduce pollution.