Indian Railways 'hi-tech' leap: Four ways public transporter has made people's lives easier
Indian Railways has taken several initiatives in the last few years to make commuters' lives easy.
Indian Railways has taken several initiatives in the last few years to make commuters' lives easy. Though several complaints about food and cleanliness onboard the trains and difficulty in booking Tatkal tickets remain, the adoption of IT initiatives has made the lives of passengers easy in many ways. Here are at least four examples:
First, Railways has provided handheld terminals (HHTs) to the Train Ticket Examiners (TTEs). These terminals enable them to check the reserved coaches, allot the vacant berths and transmit information on available berths to the subsequent stations. "The HHT can also access the ticketing application and collect excess fares as per rules. The terminal can potentially connect to a Point of Sale (POS) machine and charges can be collected digitally," Ministry of Railways said in a release Saturday.
Second, the railway ticket-booking website has been modernized. As per the ministry, the capacity of IRCTS website has increased to 20,000 tickets per minute in the last four years. The ministry says that IRCTC's capacity has been increased ten-fold increase since 2014. The launch of a new interface with easier navigation and standard views that enable the passengers to transact smoothly on the website.
Third, the Railways now allows passengers to book paperless unreserved tickets on mobile phones. Launched on 25 December 2014 at Mumbai, the facility has been expanded to suburban sections of Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Secunderabad and New Delhi-Palwal section of Northern Railway. "This has eliminated the need for passengers to stand in queue for getting tickets for the journey in unreserved compartments of trains. The ticket is delivered on the Mobile Phone and is embedded with QR Code," says the Ministry. About 4 lakh passengers per day are using this facility daily.
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Fourth, Railways is now implementing a Real Time Train Information System (RTIS) to make the tracking of train location easy. This system allows GPS tracking devices to communicate using satellite communications. The real time tracking of trains is expected to reduce mishaps and improve the timeliness of trains. The trials have been successful. A data logger systems now available in track circuited stations are being used at major interchange points to capture arrival/departure information on trains. Also, a Computerised Train Signal Register is going live at 650 stations, enabling arrival/departure information to be transmitted to the Control Office Application (COA) and the National train Enquiry System (NTES) directly from the station master’s desk.