Check CR local status online in a month

Central Railway commuters will be able to track real-time location of trains across the suburban network on a dedicated website——or the pan-India train inquiry number 139 within a month. The information will help commuters alter their travel plans if there is a delay in or cancellation of a preferred service.

The project, which is nearing completion, will come as a relief to lakhs of CR commuters. The CR suburban network operates around 1,618 services per day on all its three lines—main, harbour as well as trans-harbour.

Commuters will not just be able to track a train’s exact location but also the preceding and following two stations.

It is the Control Office Application (COA) that currently monitors the movement of long-distance trains across the country in real time through a computer-aided interface. It was developed by the Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS)—the information technology arm of Indian Railways. The COA enables passengers to track the movement of both scheduled and unscheduled trains on the website or on 139.

CR divisional general manager Mukesh Nigam said, “Till now, one can only track the movement of long-distance trains because the suburban network is not completely integrated with the COA.”

Nigam further said he was keen on this integration to capitalize on the use of mobile phones. Moreover, in a busy city such as Mumbai, commuters would benefit from updated information on trains, he said.

The suburban network is a challenging task, Nigam said, as certain stretches run on four corridors while long-distance trains operate on two. The average frequency of services on the main line is f our minutes and harbour line five minutes.

IRCTC website would book over 7,000 tickets per minute

The IRCTC’s website will book 7200 tickets e-tickets per minute in days to come. In written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha, on Friday, minister of state for railways Kotla Jaya Surya Prakash Reddy said ‘next generation’ e-ticketing system is under developement by Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS).

The website would have high performance and seamless access even at peak time and have high availability and business continuity, scalability to cater to future growth and security to prevent frauds and unauthorized access. The estimated cost is Rs 68.97 crore.

Published in: on August 31, 2013 at 1:02 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: ,

Smart card for train journey on Howrah and Mumbai routes

Passengers will soon be able to use smart cards for buying train tickets on the busy Delhi-Howrah and Delhi-Mumbai routes and also in the Kolkata Metro.

“A pan-India multi-purpose smart card is going to be launched by railways in two most sought after routes on a pilot basis shortly and the modalities are being worked for it,” said a senior Railway Ministry official involved in the project.

Aptly named Go-India card, it can be used for booking tickets for long distance and sub-urban trains on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Horwah routes.

Asked whether the scheme will be extended to other routes, officials said, “the pilot project is for one year and depending on the response we will decide for its extension on other routes”.

The Go-India card proposal, as announced in the Rail Budget 2011-12, will be implemented in two phases.

“While in the first phase it will allow the passenger to buy train tickets in the Delhi-Kolkata and Delhi-Mumbai routes, Kolkata Metro will be included in the second phase,” he said.

One can book reserved and unreserved tickets using the Go-India card at booking counters, automatic ticketing vending machines (ATVM) and also through the Internet.

All major stations like Kanpur, Allahabad and Dhanbad in Delhi-Howrah route and Baroda and Surat in Delhi-Mumbai sector will have facilities for using Go-India card.

The Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS), the IT arm of railways, is making the software for the smart card.

“We will sign an agreement with a nationalised bank shortly to make the Go-India card operational,” the official said adding, “our aim is to make booking of tickets for train journey a hassle-free exercise for the passenger as this will act as a single window package for long distance, sub-urban and metro journeys.”

Rlys to launch own portal for e-ticketing

The Indian Railways, following frequent complaints, has decided to launch its own portal for e-ticketing to cater to the needs of the people. The new portal is likely to be launched by September-end. However, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will continue to issue e-tickets to passengers on its website.

According to a Railway Board official, the railways will start issuing e-tickets online on its own website from the last week of September providing an option to the needy and computer savvy passengers to procure their e-tickets either from IRCTC or Indian Railways website as per their convenience, he said.

The board official said the railways’ move would end monopoly of private sectors, who have been given franchise by IRCTC to book e-tickets from different places across the country. At present about 30 per cent of all rail ticket bookings are being made by the IRCTC. The railways is, in fact, considering to provide multiple e-ticket booking choice to passengers at a time of computerisation and globalization, he said.

The Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS), which is a wing of railways, has been working hard to make e-ticket booking functional on its own portal. Recently it became difficult for most of passengers to access the IRCTC website for booking their tickets through e-ticketing system. The recent scam related to e-ticketing booking and fake cancellation of trains in Samastipur division of East Central Railway (ECR) has forced Indian Railways to work out an alternative website for procuring e-tickets across the country, the board official said.

The official admitted that railways was forced to ban about eight lakh e-ticketing agents at the country level for booking Tatkal tickets between 8 am and 9 am on the IRCTC portal due to glaring misuse of this facility by these agents. These agents have been grabbing berths to sell them at a premium at all important stations. The ban imposed on them to access the IRCTC website in the first one hour has so far yielded good results. The new railway portal will become an easily accessible portal for the common people to procure e-tickets by any mail and express trains, he said.

It may be recalled that the Indian Railways has, of late, stripped the IRCTC of catering services on all long distance mail and express trains. Railways intends to take up the catering responsibility on itself to serve passengers with meals and breakfast on running trains, sources said.

Hand Held Terminals for TTEs likely

NEW DELHI, INDIA: After bringing revolution in Passengers Reservation System (PRS) by introducing ticket booking facility online, Indian Railways is working further to enhance comfort of passengers in its reservation system.

CIOL interacted with some senior officials of Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS), responsible for the implementation of Information and Communication Technology in Indian Railways, before CRIS Day, and learnt that CRIS is working on projects to make the services greener and simultaneously improve its various processes by deploying technology.

These processes include improvement in PRS by providing confirmation to ticket in waiting list while on the move and sending instant accommodation availability status on the running train to all stations and even the stations to which it would be approaching.

Internally known as the Hand Held Terminal (HHT) system, it has been provided to Travelling Ticket Examiners (TTEs) on a pilot basis on a total of twelve Rajadhani Express trains and some trains running between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

IRCTC had also revamped its website, to make it more user friendly. Also Oracle is helping it in freight management.

TTEs play a critical role in the efficient allotment of accommodation to the millions of passengers who reserve seats in trains.

“Use of hand-held devices by the TTEs has been envisioned as a means of easing their work, as well as making the process of berth allotment on running trains visible to passengers. It will also improve the quality of information in our databases for further analysis by our business intelligence systems,” elaborated SB Roy, Director, Passengers Reservation System (PRS), CRIS.

At present TTEs have to carry sheaves of paper reservation charts, and refer to them each time they check a passenger ticket or allot a berth on the train. With the use of hand-held devices, this paper gets eliminated.

“This will benefit passengers in two ways. First, passengers at stations that the train is yet to cross would be able to book tickets for seats that could not be occupied by the passengers who had already booked them. Secondly, passengers claiming refund against tickets that they had booked but could not travel on would be greatly facilitated,” explained Seema Kumar, General Manager in charge of the project.

Even TTEs are enjoying using these hand-held devices for ticket checking.

“With the implementation of Hand-Held Terminals on Shatabdi Trains, it has become very convenient to do ticket checking as need for carrying multiple paper charts has been completely eliminated,” said Ramesh Kumar, Deputy Train Superintendent, Shatabdti Express Trains, Delhi.

CRIS is also working on systems to provide train tickets on mobile phone of passengers.

“In case of a reserved ticket, a passenger will just have to show an SMS to the TTE instead of a paper ticket. The SMS will be sent from our server at the time of booking the ticket,” said one of the CRIS managers, who did not want to be named, and is involved in the project.

He added that since the project is under development, and will have to get the board approval, it will be too early to comment on the timeline for the availability of this facility.

With over one million passengers traveling daily on reserved tickets, the tons of paper used for printouts can be saved with this facility.

CRIS is experimenting with the system to send unreserved tickets directly to passengers’ mobile phones. Applications are being tested that would generate tickets in the mobile phone itself. However, the implementation of such systems is still some time away, since various clearances would have to be provided by the Ministry of Railways, before such tickets could become a convenient reality for the millions of passengers using train services daily.

©CyberMedia News

Renew rly season tickets at vending machines

By the end of this month, the suburban commuters would be able to renew their monthly/tri-monthly season tickets at the Automated Ticket Vending Machines (ATVMs) and escape long queues at the ticket counter. Rail officials said the process of issuing season tickets through ATVMs is almost over but refused to reveal the exact date of the commencement of the service.

“We are done with the testing and services should begin by the month-end,” said C P Sharma, divisional railway manager (Mumbai division), Western railway. The Central Railway is likely to start the service at the same time but officials refused to comment on the date.

ATVMs were introduced in the suburban section in October 2007 and are monitored by Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS). After being ignored by the people for a long time, the service has now started gaining popularity, with some 8000 ATVM cards being issued on a daily basis. The service aims at helping people avoid serpentine queues. “Using the ATVMs, one can renew the season ticket but the machine can not issue fresh season tickets. For the commuters’ ease, the ATVMs would have a keyboard in the screen through which commuters can make changes in the ticket,” said a rail official. These changes could be made in class, destination and date. In an option given on the screen, the commuter has to enter the UTS number, a unique one through which the railways maintain a database of any commuter.–renew-rly-season-tickets-at-vending-machines/461550/

Railway Tender Procurement goes e – way

BHUBANESWAR, Jan. 30: The e-procurement system, aimed at improving transparency and reducing costs, was inaugurated by railway board chairman Mr KC Jena here recently.
The east coast railway stores department purchases around Rs 750 crore materials every year and this system will further improve transparency and productivity of the railway, Mr Jena said.
The e-procurement platform to ECoR has been provided by Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS) who has been entrusted. The new system will bring in benefits in terms of cost savings due to improved competition, improved internal efficiency ~ the procurement cycle will be further compressed by around 30 days, improved transparency in tendering process, and reduction in physical interface between government staff and contractor, railway sources said.
The contractors can now bid and witness the tender opening and see the bids of other tenders in their office or at home.
According to an estimate, the saving will be in the orders of lakh of rupees to the bidder for each tender case. To take advantage of this system, prospective suppliers should register themselves with IREPS (Indian Railways E-Procurement System) and for that they can visit, railway sources said.