Indian Railways is planning to run 200 additional IRCTC special trains between October 15 and November 30 to deal with huge number of crowd travelling during the festive season. Railway Board Chairman and CEO V.K. Yadav on Thursday said that the national transporter is planning to introduce 200 special trains from October 15. This would help in catering passengers travelling during the festive season.
The announcement comes at a time when Railways has suspended all regular passenger trains indefinitely. Regular trains have remained suspended since March 22.
From May 12, Railways started running limited IRCTC special trains to help stranded people in other states to reach their homes. It started with 15 pairs of premium Rajdhani special trains connecting Delhi with different parts of the country, followed by 100 pairs of long-distance trains on June 1. It also started 80 trains additionally on September 12.
"We have conducted meetings with the general managers of zones and instructed them to speak with local administration and review the status of coronavirus. They have been asked to give us a report after which we will decide how many trains can be introduced during the holiday season," said V.K. Yadav.
"Our estimate as of now is that we will run around 200 trains, but it is an estimate, the number could be more," he added.
He said that the Railways will take stock of passenger services on a daily basis depending on the needs of the state governments and the status of the pandemic.
As far as passenger trains are concerned, the situation now is that we will analyse the requirements of trains, the traffic patterns and corona status on a daily basis.
Wherever there is a need we will run trains, he said.
Yadav also said that the occupancy of clone trains, which were introduced by the national transporter in routes with high demand, is around 60 per cent.
"We have started the system of clone trains where every morning we analyse the data on trains through a software and our efforts are to ensure that wherever there is long waitlisting, a clone train is run there," he said.
"We have also decided that wherever the clone train is filled, we will run another clone train on the same route to ensure that there are no passengers waitlisted, he said.
With PTI inputs