SECUNDERABAD: South Central Railway initiated an action plan to improve the quality of catering services and prevent overcharging of passengers by violation of prescribed price norms for food items, water bottles etc., Implementing the directives of Shri Piyush Goyal, Hon’ble Minister for Railways with regard to the improvement of catering services by maintaining quality, tasty and cleanliness with correct price, South Central Railway carried out intensive checks on large scale as part of the action plan.
Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav, General Manager, South Central Railway reviewed the status of catering services and instructed the officials to implement a special action plan to meet the objective of providing rail passengers with quality food as per the prescribed guidelines. To implement the same, the concept of Decoy checks is planned to curb the overcharging and improvement of catering services at both static and mobile units of catering. These checks are being continuously carried out from 14th September, 2017 over the jurisdiction of entire South Central Railway. The total Decoy Checks conducted between 14th September, 2017 to 30th April, 2018 were 3738 . During these checks 1016 cases were proved and realized an amount of Rs. 87, 14, 330/- (87.14 Lakhs).
These Decoy Checks were conducted by involving Commercial Officers, Commercial & Catering Inspectors, Ticket Checking Staff etc. The decoy team will reach the selected station / unit by road and conduct checks. If any vendor sells other than prescribed rates the identity of the vendor will be seized and a statement of the transaction will be recorded. Suitable fines will be imposed and realized on the spot for the cases proved.
On introduction of Decoy checks, all the catering vendors have been counselled at Secunderabad station on 16th November, 2017 and 4th December, 2018. Moreover, on 23rd March, 2018 the catering licensees have been detailed regarding the need for Decoy checks and the action being taken thereon by the Railway. The Catering licensees have been given sufficient time to understand the step taken by the Railway to curb overcharging.
In addition to the counselling sessions to the catering licensees and vendors, instructions have also been issued to the Divisions and Group General Manager (GGM), Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation. As a part of strong foothold taken on eradication of overcharging, Railway is being firm to the extent of even giving termination notices to the licensees of two tea stalls at Secunderabad and Falaknuma stations and also one major unit i.e., Cell kitchen at Gudur station.