New Delhi, May 23 : In an effort towards returning to normalcy, Railway Board Chairman Vinod Kumar Yadav in Saturday announced that the Railways has transported about 46 lakh passengers to their destinations in more than 2,600 trips undertaken by Shramik Special trains started since May 1 and also prepared a plan to deliver about 47 lakh more passengers in the next 10 days.
Giving this information at a press conference here, the Railway Board Chairman said these trains, being run in coordination with state governments, will continue to run as long as they were in demand. Emergency racks are standing ready to carry workers in special trains at every railway division headquarters of the country. He said "on the demand of the states and the local administration, the Indian Railways is ready to run the Shramik special train from any station in the country in the shortest possible time."
Mr Yadav said the Railways will start more than 200 trains from June 1 to 30 in addition to 15 pairs of special trains started from May 12 after Shramik Special trains were announced. So far, more than 17 lakh tickets have been booked for them, which is about 30 per cent of the total seats available. Maximum booking windows of the Railways have been opened, he informed, adding that "the Railways was following fully the health protocol announced for the passengers in collaboration with the state Governments. That is why vehicles are being stopped in the same place where there is a system of compliance of that protocol." He also said the Railways had completely stopped unreserved travel.
Waiting and RAC tickets are not meant to compromise social distancing and RAC tickets will be issued only to those whose seats were confirmed. He denied that the Railways was charging more, pointing out that it was charging the same fare as it used to before the lockdown. Some concessions have now been postponed because the Railways want to discourage unnecessary travel at this time. MORE (UNI)