Considering the upsurge of COVID in few states, the Indian Railway on Friday has hiked prices of platform ticket for railway stations across the country. The platform ticket price has been increased from Rs 10 to Rs 30 as a "temporary" measure aimed at preventing crowding during the pandemic.
Ministry of Railways intends to reduce the number of people at stations with this step. The decision would help ensure social distancing and COVID-appropriate behaviour.
The national transporter said the exercise is in the public interest and platform ticket charges are increased from time to time after assessing the ground situation.
The ministry, in a statement, said that regulation and controlling of the crowd at stations is the responsibility of the Divisional Railway Managers (DRMs). "The power to change charges of platform tickets has been delegated to DRMs due to field management requirements," it added.
Railways Ministry clarified that the hike in price of platform ticket is a temporary measure and is a field activity undertaken by railway administration in the interest of the safety of passengers and to prevent overcrowding at stations.
This has been in practice for many years and is used occasionally as a short-term crowd control measure and there is nothing new about it, added the ministry. Earlier, this had been done during festivals and gradually rolled back, it said.
Earlier, the Maharashtra government had increased platform ticket prices of certain key stations in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region to Rs 50 to prevent over-crowding at railway stations. The new rate came into effect on February 24 and will remain effective until June 15.
(With inputs from PTI)