New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: In an indication that it might soon start mail, express as well as chair car services, the Railway Board on Wednesday issued an order introducing the provision of waiting list tickets not only for its operational special trains but for more such trains "to be notified in due course".

While in present special trains only confirmed tickets are booked, the wait listed tickets will now be available for bookings opening on May 15 for journeys beginning from May 22.

The railways has, however, put a cap on the waiting list -- up to 100 for AC 3 tier, 50 for AC 2 tier, 200 for Sleeper Class, 100 for chair cars, and 20 each for First AC and Executive Class -- shortening queues for confirmed tickets.

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Before the lockdown, the railways operated around 12,000 trains every day. Since May 1, it ran 366 special trains for migrant workers from different corners of the country. On Monday, nearly six weeks after the lockdown started, the home ministry announced that a limited train service will begin from Tuesday.

The order from the railway board to zones indicates that the railways is planning to run mixed services instead of the presently all air-conditioned trains. This also means that it could begin services to smaller towns along with the major cities that its Rajdhani specials are catering to now.

Neither Tatkal or Premium Tatkal Quota nor senior citizen quota will be available on these trains. Reservation against Cancellation (RAC) tickets will also not be allowed. No waiting ticket holder will be allowed to travel, officials said, adding that they will get full refund.

Railways Minister Piyush Goyal tweeted: "Railways plans to gradually restart passenger train operations from May 12, 2020, initially with 15 pairs of special trains connecting New Delhi with major stations across India. Booking in these trains will start at 4 pm on May 11".

A list of rules, emphasizing social distancing and screening of passengers before boarding, was also issued.

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The list of destinations for the trains, starting from New Delhi included Dibrugarh, Agartala, Howrah, Patna, Bilaspur, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Secunderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Madgaon, Mumbai Central, Ahmedabad, and Jammu Tawi a statement from the Railways said.

So far there is no order from the railways to begin more services but Wednesday's order indicated that it could begin services of non-air conditioned trains.

 

(With Agencies Inputs)

Posted By: Talib Khan