When railway authorities installed Automated Ticket Vending Machines (ATVMs) at train stations, they were meant to be a blessing for commuters waiting in endless lines for tickets. However, it appears as if the boon has turned into a bane, as most of the ATVMs are non-functional and need maintenance.
Touted as a timesaving option, the ATVMs were supposed to provide travellers relief; instead, they are compounding problems. In a survey carried out by MiD DAY yesterday, an average of 30 to 40 per cent of the ATVMs were inoperative on both the Western and Central Railway line. In fact, on the Central line, out of 250 ATVMs, 70 were non-functional. During the survey, it was found that Thane had two ATVMs, both of which were non-functioning. Also, at Kanjurmarg, the only ATVM was not working. Similarly, at Vikhroli, of three ATVMs, one was out of order.
Meanwhile, on the Western line at Andheri, two ATVMs had gone haywire. One machine at Vile Parle was also non-functional. Commuters at Bandra were also facing trouble, as two ATVMs were inoperative.
Ashok Kumar Singh, PRO, CR, said, “We monitor the ATVMs daily and if a problem is found, we rush our staff to rectify it.” When MiD DAY approached Sharat Chandrayan, chief PRO, WR, he denied there were any botherations with the functioning of the ATVMs. When told that we had checked the contraptions ourselves, he got agitated and said, “We will first verify our machines and only then comment on the issue.”
I prefer standing in long queues instead of using these ATVM machines, since they don’t work most of the time.
— Mithin Mehta, Thane
I am using these ATVM machines for the last four years. But, out of the three machines here, only one or two work.
— Vidya Patankar, Kanjurmarg
There is always some problem with these machines. We keep trying, but it’s just a big waste of time.
— Mayuri Parmar, Andheri
I have been using ATVMs for
the last one year. However, these devices often give us trouble and today, owing to technical glitches, I am forced to wait in the ticket queue for an hour.
— DM Singh, Vashi