Railways to launch a faster ticketing site by November

There is something to cheer about for Railway users who have been facing long delays and failed transactions while trying to book tickets. The Railways is working on a brand new website that is three times faster. The plan is phase out the present IRCTC site and get the new one up and running in November.

For the time being, the new site will have a Beta version (development stage) bringing in users only if they want a booking experience different from the present IRCTC site. So, when the user reaches the home page of http://www.irctc.co.in, it will give two options: one will be the regular website and another link that will invite the user to “try out a new experience”.

According to Sunil Kumar, MD of Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS), the IT arm of the national carrier, the new site is based on a new programming. “In it, we will separate journey planning from the part that involves ticket booking so that much of the information required for planning the journey can be accessed smoothly without hogging the resources needed to actually book the ticket,” Kumar said.

The website will “cache” info like train timings and other parameters electronically sought by every user to decide on a train he wants to book. This will segregate the traffic of users from those who actually go ahead with the booking.

During Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s recent visit to Berlin, CRIS signed a pact with its German counterpart DB Systel which will collaborate in technology transfer for Indian Railway’s IT upgrade.

From 2,000 tickets per minute, the CRIS aims to create a system that can be book 7,000 tickets per minute by using massive server and firewall augmentation.

“The aim right now is to achieve user delight through technology solutions in Railways,” he said. Railway’s electronic-ticket booking business, through the IRCTC website (powered by CRIS), caters to up to five lakh ticket bookings per day, making it the largest e-commerce venture in the country and one of the largest in the world.


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