Patna : An ambitious plan of the railway ministry to provide confirmed berths to passengers in trains is still hanging fire. Railway ministry had earlier decided to provide confirmed tickets to all passengers in each class . Talks in this connection were held between railway ministry and Railway Board officials. Unfortunately the plan could not make any headway for the reasons best known to railway ministry, sources said.
According to railway ministry sources , under the proposed plan railways was to run an identical train for spillover bookings which had the waitlist tickets of a huge number of passengers . Railways could run an identical train with the same load combination on the same route . The average capacity of a full load train is about 700 berths including AC-1 , AC-2 , AC-3 , sleeper and general bogies, sources said.
Though this idea mooted by railway ministry had evoked a positive response from the Board officials , the frequent change in the guard in the ministry has, however, cast a shadow on the project . But the railway ministry under the Modi government seems to be serious to give a second thought to this proposal , sources said adding running special trains during festivals or summer is no solution to huge passengers’ rush.
Once approved, the project would generate revenue to cash strapped railways. The Board had agreed in principle to run identical trains to clear rush of passengers during peak summer and festival time providing the same amenities to passengers. However, a major hiccup for railways is that it is running both passenger and goods trains on the same tracks making the path ( tracks ) fully saturated on several routes across the country particularly on New Delhi – Mughalsarai – Patna Junction – Howrah route . Thus running identical trains everyday on the same congested route would not be feasible for railways, sources said.
According to sources , this project would have given much relief to passengers living in Bihar. The most crowded routes in Bihar are Patna- Delhi , Patna – Pune , Patna – Mumbai , Patna – Chennai – Bangalore , Patna – Howrah , and Patna – Cochin – Trivandrum . Confirmed tickets are hardly available on these routes throughout the year . Thus running identical trains with same amenities would prove to be a boon for passengers in Bihar during festivals, sources said.