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Railways to upgrade ticketing capacity from 25,000 to 2.25 lakh a minute: Ashwini Vaishnaw

The railways will lay tracks for a distance of 7,000 kilometers in the financial year 2023-24, the minister has said

February 03, 2023 / 06:58 PM IST
Union IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw (File Image: ANI)

Union IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw (File Image: ANI)

To cater to the growing number of customers, the railways is looking to upgrade the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corp's (IRCTC) online passenger ticket booking system, rail minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said on February 3.

"The Next Generation e-Ticketing (NGeT) system will be upgraded to handle 2.25 lakh passengers booking tickets per minute," the minister said at a press conference.

At present, IRCTC's website can book more than 25,000 tickets per minute. The capacity for attending to inquiries would also be upgraded from four lakh a minute to 40 lakh, Vaishnaw said.

In 2019, the eighth report of the standing committee on railways on the passenger reservation system recommended that IRCTC website be upgraded to cater to more customers.

A record number of 26,458 tickets were booked in a minute on March 5, 2020, after the Centre announced a nationwide lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19, with hundreds of thousands of people looking to go back home from cities where they worked.

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The railways will lay new tracks for a distance of 7,000 kilometers in the financial year 2023-24, the minister said.

The 2022-23 target of laying railway tracks for a distance of 4,500 km (12 km per day) has already been achieved, the minister said

“Before 2014, this used to be four kilometres per day. The railways has set a target of laying new railway tracks for a distance of 7,000 kilometres next year.”

He also said “Jan Suvidha” convenience stores will be built at 2,000 stations and they will remain open round the clock.

Earlier in the day, in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha, the minister said 79 acres of railway land was encroached upon in Banbhoolpura in Uttarakhand's Haldwani.

"Railway has certified copy of land records i.e. khasra, khatauni and land plans duly verified by State Revenue department," Vaishnaw said in a reply to a question seeking evidence to back the claim.

A copy of the joint survey of the area done in 2017 by the state government and the railway was also available, he added.

The minister said that railways had initially claimed 29 acres of the encroached land but after the joint survey, 79 acres was found encroached, he said.

The railways had filed two affidavits in the Uttarakhand High Court. Last month, the Supreme Court stayed an Uttarakhand High Ccourt order to clear encroachments from the land.

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