In a bid to assure seats to many more passengers who book their train tickets through Tatkal services, the railways have proposed to run special long-distance trains. Even passengers on waiting lists will benefit, once the union railway ministry accepts the proposal.
“We will be presenting the proposal of running special trains for Tatkal passengers to the union railway minister,” said Subodh Jain, general manager of Central Railway and member (engineering) of the Railway Board. Hopeful commuters line up as early as 8 in the morning to get tickets through Tatkal bookings, but often return empty-handed, as these get booked within minutes.
To give them a fair chance, the railways have now barred travel agents who would hog a chunk of the berths from booking tickets online during the first two hours of business. As per the current proposal, the railways intend to run back-to-back trains to ease the pressure. They also plan to add extra coaches to existing rakes to accommodate more bookings.
The number of people opting for Tatkal bookings increases during holidays and summer vacations, and even the waiting list climbs up to 300-400 people, including those who have registered through Tatkal.
Sources in the railways said the additional trains would have between 15-18 coaches, unlike regular outstation trains that have about 20 coaches.