With start of summer vacations just around the corner, railway touts in the city have already started doing brisk business. The Railway Police Force (RPF) on Central Railway and the railway's anti-tout cell caught two black-marketers on February 5, who were involved in selling tickets for long distance trains in bulk.
The cops, on a tip-off, found that two of these culprits -- Manoj Shukla and Mahendra Dubey -- had been selling rail tickets illegally after booking them in bulk. The RPF officers said that as soon as they got to know of the illegal activity they launched a hunt for these illegal touts. The duo were interpected at a crowded market place near Phanaswadi and caught them red-handed with rail tickets in hand.
They were caught on February 5 by the railway cops from whom they recovered confirmed railway tickets worth approximately Rs 60000, which had a total of 39 tickets to different railway stations starting from Mumbai. "These two are mainly residents of Phanaswadi in Mumbai who used to book rail tickets in bulk and sell it off to passengers in need at higher rates," said A Bohra, Senior DSC (Mumbai), Central Railway.
Sources said that these tickets were booked from the Passenger Reservation System (PRS) at Churchgate station, which were then to be sold from their home-cum-office. These tickets would simply be handed over to the needy who would then pose as the person against whom the ticket was booked. The two would then get a commission of at least Rs 100 behind every ticket.
They booked these tickets early in the morning when counters opened after buying 2-3 tickets at one go. Of the 39 tickets, 25 were booked for March-April while the rest were dated this month. Most of the destinations were to Mathura, Marwar, Varanasi, Jaipur, Patna, Udaipur, Ratnagiri, Jodhpur and Valsad.