The Indian Railways is gearing up to resume operations of the trains that were suspended in March due to coronavirus outbreak. However, it was reported in some sections of media on Tuesday that fares of many trains will be hiked from January 6.
The reports also claimed that reservations of seats will now be made mandatory in trains in order to reduce the congestion of passengers on trains. It was reported that a reservation fee of Rs 15 will be included in all the ticket prices.
However, the Indian Railways on Tuesday rejected these reports and said that there is no plan to increase the fare of passenger trains.
According to news agency ANI, the Indian Railways said, “Certain sections of media have reported about the possibility of some hike in passenger fares. This news is baseless and without any factual basis. There is no proposal under consideration to increase fares. Media is advised to not to publish or circulate such reports.”
Earlier too, the Indian Railways had issued a clarification denying the news of increasing the fare during the festive season.
It may be recalled that train services were suspended on March 22, 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic. In the Unlock phases, special trains were launched by the Indian Railways to meet the growing demand of passengers during the festive season.
In December 2019, Indian Railways had announced fare hike across its network, excluding suburban trains, from January 1, 2020. At that time, the fares of ordinary non-AC, non-suburban trains were increased by 1 paise per km of journey.
The Railways had also announced a two paise/km hike in fares of mail/express non-AC trains and four paise/km hike in the fares of AC classes. The fare of premium trains like Shatabdi, Rajdhani and Duronto were also increased back then.