Mumbai: New vending machines take cash but don't issue train tickets

48 recently procured Coin-and-Cash Operated Ticket Vending Machines are plagued with problems like non-issuance of tickets and over printing, among others

Looks like all the efforts put in by the railways to help commuters save time while purchasing tickets for the suburban network are backfiring. The latest effort to join this non-productive list is the Coin-and-Cash Operated Ticket Vending Machine (COTVM).

Also Read: COTVMs are back at Mumbai's railway stations, and costlier

Despite presence of a COTVM, commuters prefer to wait in queues to purchase train tickets at CST. File pic
Despite presence of a COTVM, commuters prefer to wait in queues to purchase train tickets at CST. File pic

Inaugurated with much fanfare by Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu at CST in October, the project has failed to click with the commuters — just like the mobile ticketing app.

Read Story: Railways' trial ticketing system fails to gather steam

To make matters worse, the recently procured batch of 48 COVTM machines for installation at important station on the Central Railway (CR) is already riddled with technical glitches. Each of the machines is worth Rs 8 lakh.

Failed to click
A CR official, requesting anonymity, said these machines have failed to facilitate commuters. “Tickets gets stuck in the printer or at times are issued twice. Over printing is also an issue.

But non-issuance of tickets despite inserting money is the most common complaint we receive from commuters. We can’t use the machines unless they are rectified. For time being, these machines are lying unused,” the official said.

Sources from CR claimed that authorities are working hard to make the COTVMs functional by trying to upgrade the software and rectify the technical glitches. They added that COTVMs are equipped with hardware capable of identifying counterfeit, soiled, glued or taped notes.

What’s accepted
Notes: Rs 5, Rs 10, Rs 20, Rs 50, Rs 100, Rs 500 and Rs 1000 
Coins: Rs 5 and Rs 10 coins. Use of Rs 1 and Rs 2 coins barred

100
Total COTVMs CR was supposed to install within a year

70
Total COTVMs WR was supposed to install within a year

Rs 8 lakh
Cost of a single COTVM

Rs 3.5 lakh
Cost of the hardware that detects bad currency

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