'Tatkal' no more priority over normal waitlisted ticket

Railway Board rolls back circular on 'Tatkal' ticket holders after PIL filed in MP HC

PTI | January 9, 2013



The Railway Board has rolled back a circular under which 'Tatkal' ticket holders were given priority while clearing waiting lists over normal reservation ticket holders.

The circular was taken back by the Railway Board after a public interest litigation (PIL) was filed at the Madhya Pradesh High Court's principal bench at Jabalpur on the issue, after which the court directed the railways on December 12, 2012, to appoint a competent official where the petitioner could file his complaint in this regard.

However, the railways moved a review petition yesterday to inform the high court that it has withdrawn the circular under which 'Tatkal' ticket holders were given priority in clearing waiting lists, over those with normal reservation.

The PIL was filed by a journalist Sanjeev Pandey, who termed the circular as against the interest of large numbers of normal reservation ticket holders who book their tickets three to four months in advance to get confirmed tickets.

The Railway Board's decision is expected to benefit a large number of railway passengers, especially those who cannot spend enough money to book a 'Tatkal' ticket.

The journalist alleged that the circular clearly indicated that the railway had deviated from its role of a public welfare institution to a purely commercial one catering to the needs of only the rich.

If such practices are allowed to continue, common people would be deprived of their chance to get tickets on the waiting list confirmed, he said.

The Railway Board, in its circular issued on May 15, 2012, said that clearance of waiting list tickets of a general passenger would be done only after clearing the 'Tatkal' waiting list, as part of its efforts to earn more.

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