Buying tatkal train tickets at the Computerised Passenger Reservation Centres in Chennai has been made hassle-free as the Railways has earmarked exclusive counters for passengers who book tickets for themselves.
The new initiative, christened ‘Self Tatkal Ticket Windows’ will sell one ticket per passenger, who come in person, for one hour from the start of booking at 10 am every day. Each ticket can have a maximum of four passengers.
“We want to give priority for the passenger, who comes in person to book ticket at the reservation centre,” a senior Southern Railway official told ‘Express’.
“The system is being introduced in Chennai Division, after its initial success at Mumbai. Self Tatkal Ticket Windows are available at the Madurai and Salem Divisions as well,” the officer added.
“A chunk among those waiting in the queue would be the representatives of actual passengers, like office-subordinates or relatives. This affects the prospects of an actual traveller waiting in the queue for long hours to get confirmed ticket,” another official said.
With this new system, commuters can visit the reservation counters just an hour before the bookings start. The actual passenger could be identified at the booking stage itself as the person has to carry a valid identity proof to buy ticket from the designated counter. Tatkal booking opens one day before the actual date of journey and it is a big relief for people who are willing to pay a premium to travel in emergency situations.
Though tatkal booking facility is available online, passengers complain that they are unable to do it on the website http://www.irctc.co.in during the rush hours.