Mobile app to book unreserved tickets for all destinations soon
Passengers travelling in unreserved classes would no longer have to wait in serpentine queues for getting tickets to their destination from the counters as the Ministry of Railways is planning to launch a mobile application to address the woes of general class travellers.
According to a senior official, the technical formalities for the launching of the mobile app have been completed and it can be launched anytime in the next month. "The app has been prepared to address the 'mad rush' at ticket windows at different railway stations. It's been noticed that during rush time several passengers fail to get tickets for their destination and land in trouble for travelling without a ticket. The ministry hopes that the app would prove to be a great help for unreserved commuters."
Initially, the app would be rolled out as a pilot project by Northern Railways zone, which is biggest in terms of a network having 6,807-kilometre route, and on its successful implementation; the services of the app would be thrown open for all divisions. Passengers travelling to the states of Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi and Chandigarh would be able to book unreserved tickets in the first phase.
Notably, a similar app was also started by the ministry for booking of unreserved tickets in Mumbai suburb areas and some destinations of Delhi mandal.
Given that about 40 crore people are smartphone user and the number is increasing, the Rail Ministry is aiming to make available train tickets through mobile phones by harnessing the potential of Digital India. "Of the total train passengers of the country, about 97 per cent travel in unreserved class, while only 2 per cent travel in reserved class and merely 1 per cent passengers are of AC category," a senior official said.
Explaining about the functioning of the app, the official said, "The app would let a passenger book ticket and make payment for the same. After ticket booking procedure is over, the user would get a booking ID and be using the ID, the passenger would get printed ticket from vending machines available at railway stations. There would be executives to help passengers in getting printed ticket at vending machines and their details along with the photo and mobile number would be on display at the kiosks."
The passengers can also travel without taking the hard copy of the ticket as the booked ticket details would be delivered in the mobile application itself. The unreserved passenger segment largely consists of the economically lower class, the lower middle class and wait-listed middle and upper classes.