The Indian Railways has hiked fares for some short-distance routes to discourage non-essential travel. The imposition of slightly higher fares for short-distance travel is being seen as a step by the railways to prevent crowding in trains and help curb the spread of COVID-19. With a view to regulate rush at stations and in trains, passengers are being charged slightly more fare than pre-COVID times and a close watch is being kept on its patronisation. The situation is being constantly monitored to ensure restoration of services in keeping with the protocols necessary to be followed during COVID times.
Indian Railways issued a clarification on higher fares being charged for the short distance travel by the railway passengers. Slightly higher fares on trains running presently constitute less than 3 percent of total trains. The railway board has said that the higher fares for passenger and other short-distance trains has been introduced to discourage unnecessary travel. These fares are fixed at an unreserved price of mail/ express trains for the same distance. COVID-19 is still around and in fact worsening in some states. Visitors from many states are being subjected to screening in other areas and discouraged to travel.
Indian Railways had suspended the running of regular trains due to COVID-19 induced nationwide lockdown on March 22 last year as a measure to contain the spread of Coronavirus. However it resumed services in a staggered manner with shramik special trains to help stranded migrant workers reach their home states from May 01. After that railway board started fully air-conditioned rajdhani-like 30 COVID-19 special trains, 200 special trains and 80 new special trains. Indian Railways is constantly increasing the number of passenger carrying trains in a graded manner. Full restoration of regular services of passenger trains to pre-COVID times is to be considered keeping in view a range of factors and operational circumstances.
During challenging times of COVID, Indian Railways has operationalized almost 65 percent of the mail/express trains and over 90 percent of suburban services as compared to the pre lockdown times. On average a total of 1250 mail/express, 5350 suburban services & more than 326 passenger trains are presently running on a daily basis.
Railways have been running trains in COVID times in the most challenging circumstances. Many trains are being run in spite of low occupancy for the benefit of people. Not only this, Railways has taken special care about those travelling by lowest fare in trains so that even in COVID times they bear the least burden.
That’s all folks! The Trainman team recommends all its readers to only plan essential travel only until the coronavirus fades away. Keep reading the Trainman blog to get the latest updates on railways and COVID-19 virus. Download the Trainman app to check PNR Status of your ticket, Running Status, Seat Availability and many such spellbound features.