Mahamana Express Is All Ready To Set The Tracks On Fire

Indian Railways is slowly stepping ahead into the future…! You heard it right. In the recent past years, many appreciable steps were taken by the railways which are aimed to modernize the existing systems and provide utmost comfort to the passengers. The changes in this regard are not just confined to new rules and regulations. The railways are turning out to get trendier by introducing new trains with better functionalities. “Luxury”, isn’t something new to our railways. There are a few prestigious luxury trains like “Palace on wheels”, which are majorly aimed to serve foreign tourists visiting India. However, the fruits of these trains are not largely enjoyed by common people. Putting an end to this issue, the Indian railways has taken a step ahead to modernize the existing trains. As a initiative for the same, a new luxurious Indian made train, “Mahamana Express”, is all ready to set the tracks on fire. Check out the special features of this train.

  • The first thing which makes you go “wow”, in this train is the modern technology that has crept into each of its coaches. Ladders are designed to climb the upper berths with ease. Snack tables are provided in the side tables. Roller blinds and venetian blinds are used to power up the windows.mahamana-express
  • The traditional lights, which are used in regular trains are replaced by the LEDs. You can find LED reading lights, berth indicators and others in these coaches. The presence of these lights can make our night journey comfortable and safe. The toilets are designed and equipped to provide utmost comfort to the passengers. Platform washbasins, large mirrors, exhaust fans, odor control system and dust bins are featured in the toilets.
  • You can witness enhanced safety features in this train. The electrical connections are no longer placed in the passenger area. Instead they are shifted to non-passenger area onto a centralized distribution board. The journey is made a lot comfortable to the mobile and laptop addicts by increasing the number of charging points on every coach.
  • The train made its maiden journey on January 25th This train is scheduled to run thrice a week, that is, on Tuesdays, Thrusdays and Saturdays. Starting from Varanasi at 6:35 pm, it reaches its destination, Delhi by 8:25 am next day. From Delhi, it travels every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
  • A few significant stops of this train are Ghaziabad, Moradabad, Bareilly, Lucknow, Sultanpur and Janpur cities. It is to be noted that this is the only train to travel on the electrified section between the cities Moradabad and Ghaziabad.
  • When it has such special features, you can’t expect the fares of the train to remain the same. To accommodate the expensive interiors, the fare of this train is hiked by 15% than regular trains. However, there is no increase of fares for unreserved class coaches. Increasing the cost in these coaches will be unfair as the number of passengers allowed to travel are far more than the available seats.

Slowly and steadily, we can find more of such trains across the country. When you are checking out for the Indian railway train schedule, have an eagle eye for these new trains.

Railway Concessions Are Only To The Deserved…!!

The Indian Railways is all set to start in a new phase. Luxury trains have come into wide use. Slowly and steadily, the existing system is being modified, to make its services effective. The rules of senior citizen quota and concession are revised to put an end to its misuse. The facilities provided to the senior citizens are extended in this regard. Men aged above 60 and women aged above 58 can avail concession of fare in any train class. This concession in fare is provided up to 40% for men and 50% for women.  These facilities provided to senior citizen’s isn’t just confined to the concession in ticket fares. Check out the other benefits provided in this context:

train seat availability

  • In the passenger reservation system (PRS), senior citizens and women above 45 years of age will be allotted with lower berths in the train.
  • Senior citizens, women above 45 years and pregnant women can be benefitted with a combined quota of two lower berths.
  • Much to the delight of the physically challenged people, wheelchairs are provided at railway stations.
  • There will be separate counters to issue tickets to the senior citizens at PRS centers.

The current system of booking is so designed that you don’t have to carry the proof of age when you are booking the tickets. However, you have to provide them at the time of inspection. You can provide any government issued identity card as proof of age. Failing to provide the age proof on demand, a fine, which is equal to the difference between the fares will be charged against the passenger. The Indian railways have found the services being misused in the following ways extensively:

  • While booking tickets, since the passenger doesn’t have to provide any age proof, he/she books the ticket by providing wrong age. Many a times they go undetected, which results in huge revenue loss to the railways.
  • The lower berths are booked under the disguise of senior citizens. When detected, the passenger pays the difference in fares.
  • The travel agents out there are highly exploiting these services. The tickets are booked under senior citizens quota and further these agents modify the age and fare in the e-ticket. The passenger fails to notice this and falls into their trap. It is because of such reasons, the Indian railways are trying hard to put an end to these agents.

Pay close to these aspects, when you are checking out for the train seat availability. In accordance with the above issues, the Indian railways have announced its modified rules. They are as follows:

  • The ticket fare is also included in the PNR status.
  • If any passenger is found misusing the senior citizen quota, that particular person will be treated as ticketless and charges are made accordingly.
  • If found guilty, a penalty is charged against the passenger in addition to the fare difference.

Clear instructions are also passed to the ticket checking staff regarding this issue. The staff members are expected to be patient when dealing with such passengers. The customers can report to the designated authorities if they are harassed by the ticket checking staff.

The Andriod Apps That Help You In Train Travel

In India, railways are the chief means of transport for long distances. India has one of the world’s largest railway networks, and it provides access to the remotest corners of the country. The demand for the railways always stays on top. Dating back to a few years, you have to wait for long hours in queues either to get your tickets booked or track any other info. Of late, IRCTC is taking every step necessary to provide its passengers a comfortable journey. As a part of this, it has taken initiatives to provide your PNR status directly to your mobiles. If you have no idea on how to get PNR status on mobile, this is for you. Here below, we detailed a few android apps, which can help you to track the ticketing details.

PNR status and train info:

If you have your ticket in your hand, and this android app on your smart phone, your train journey can be a lot more comfortable. This is one of the most widely used applications to check the PNR status. Apart from fetching you the PNR status, this app also provides information related to train map, train schedule, seat availability, train availability, train between stations, fare enquiry, arrival and departure of trains.

Indian railway train alarm:

The key features of this app include PNR status check, booking and cancellation of tickets and monitor train schedules. The distinct feature of this app is that it alerts you about the train timings. This feature can be a lot handy, especially in case of late running of trains. It also facilitates the user to download the train schedules and keep them for further references. The amazing features of this app have fetched it the name “one station for your entire rail ticketing needs”.pnrst

IRCTC mobile:

After reading the name, you might mistake it for the official site. Though it is an unofficial site, it has gained a wide popularity for its ease of use and flexibility. If you feel that using android apps for tracking PNR status is something very new for you, start experiencing from this app. It shows the data in a completely optimized fashion, which puts the user to comfort.

Ngpay:

This is another unofficial and efficient application worth to be mentioned in this context. This application provides you the access to various banking and ticketing domains. To use it for railway ticketing purposes, select IRCTC section. This app allows you to pay money through your credit/debit cards. Once the ticket gets booked, the e-ticket drops directly into your inbox.

Indian Rail PNR status enquiry:

This will turn out to be one of the simplest android apps you ever used in this context. Once you provide your PNR number, this app generates the status of your reservation. This is going to be handy, especially when you are stuck in the waiting list.

Indian Rail Info:

If you are hungry for information, download this app without any hesitation. It gives you all the info like seat availability, train search, PNR status and any other rail or ticketing info you can mention. Answers for any type of basic or complicated questions can be generated in no time with this app.

If you are someone who travels by train very often, make sure that you have any of these apps installed in your mobile.

What’s New On Indian Railways…??

Do you know what’s new on Indian Railways this year…? New rules have crept into the railways. In the recent past years, modernization has made its way into the railways transforming it like never before. Better schemes are being implemented aiming to provide ultimate comfort to the passengers. Don’t stop yourself just by knowing about the methods of getting PNR status SMS to mobile, have a look at the latest updates from India Railways, which you should be aware of.

Introduction of aircraft like coaches:

Indian Railways Coach Rehabilation workshop in Bhopal has taken up the responsibility of designing brand new coaches for the railways. Here are the key features of these coaches:

  • The eye catching features are the illuminated signs, stairs to climb to upper berths, plush interiors and bio toilets.
  • The purple shade berths have replaced the orthodox brown and blue seats.
  • Comfortable journey is ensured to the passengers by the spacious and jerk proof seats.
  • The entire look of the coach is altered by incorporating carpet like floors, fire proof seats, mobile charging points and LED reading lights.

Can you guess how much it costs to build each coach in this fashion..? It’s a whooping 14 lakh rupees. 111 coaches are planned to be manufactured by this workshop. Test runs have resulted in successful results.PNR-Indian-Railway-Passenger-reservation-Enquiry

Modified tour packages for students:

IRCTC has taken a step ahead to facilitate the students by initiating customized tours and packages for students. This idea is generated from the success of northeast tour of Delhi University students. As a part of their scheme, a train is set to run from Chandigarh railway station offering tour to the places – Delhi, Jaipur and Agra. This train is named as “Golden triangle” and provides service especially to students. The spokesperson of IRCTC, Chandigarh, has said that as a part of their future plans, a customized train for children will be established. The demands of the school heads are considered strongly in this aspect. Trips will be scheduled as per the convenience of the schools.

It’s mandatory to carry your proof of age:

Of late, the railways have received complaints regarding the misuse of senior citizen concessions. To put an end to these issues, the Indian railways have made it mandatory that one has to carry their proof of age while travelling. However, to book the tickets, you don’t have to provide this proof. Serious action is set to take against people who declare a false age. They will be declared as the passengers who are travelling ticketless..! A concession of 40% and 50% is provided for men aged above 60 and women above 58 respectively in all train classes. As of now, if the senior citizen fails to provide the proof of age, he/she will be charged only with the fare difference. This step initiated by Indian Railways can effectively curb the agents, who misuse this facility to cheat passengers.

If you are someone who travels by train very often, it is mandatory that you keep the track of the updated rules and regulations by the Indian Railways. Apart from keeping yourself informed about these changes, it is the responsibility of every individual to educate these changes to the people around you.

Did You Check Out the New Booking and Cancellation Rules….?

In India, the railways are the backbone of long distance travelling. There are complaints against the tatkal booking system since a long time. Indian railways have come up with a new set of cancellation / refund rules putting an end to dissatisfaction among passengers. These new rules have come into action since 12th November 2015. It is aimed at the following aspects:

  • To prevent misuse of tatkal scheme.
  • To fulfill the proposed objectives like mobile tickets and paperless tickets to the passengers.
  • Put an end to the agents/touts in railways.

As a part of these modifications, the Indian railways have enabled UTS counters, where the cancellation requests are undertaken and the refunding process is carried out beyond the working hours of PRS. If you booked your tickets online, you will be refunded automatically. Prior to the introduction of this scheme, ticket deposit receipt has to be filed for the refund process.official indian railway

A few noteworthy changes are mentioned here under:

  • The cancellation charges for the unreserved, RAC and waitlisted tickets are doubled.
  • There is also a significant hike in the cancellation charges of the confirmed tickets.
  • In case of refunding on unused RAC/WL tickets the time limit is reduced to half an hour from 3 hours.
  • Cancellation of e-tickets no longer requires the filling of TDR.

Another important modification is that the passenger will not be refunded in case of cancellation of unused tatkal tickets. However, in some special circumstances like late running of trains, this rule will be exempted.

These set of new rules can help the Indian railways to use the seats optimally as the passengers have to cancel the tickets 4 hours prior to the departure to claim refund. The hike in fares can also put an end to the agents and touts who book the tickets on fake names and make money by selling them at higher prices. A significant growth in the revenue of the Indian railways can be observed as the cancellation charges are increased.

New booking rules:

The modifications are also extended to the booking policies, which have been effective from 12th November 2015. Check out the important feature of these modifications:

  • One can witness the final chart at least four hours prior to the departure of the train. This feature enables the passengers to plan well in advance for their journey.
  • Once the final reservation chart is on, booking counters will reopen on internet and on PRS counters. This can enable the passengers to book the available accommodation in the trains. If you wish to cancel your RAC/waiting list ticket, you have the time up to 30 minutes before the scheduled departure of the train.
  • Just before departure of the train, a second and the final chart will be prepared and is made available to the ticket checking staff.

The implementation of these new policies has benefited the railways to a large extent. When you get to know your PNR status railway, make sure to have these changes in your mind.

High Speed Trains Are Ready To Set The Tracks On Fire…!

Indian railways, with its track line of 65,000 kilometers and operating 19,000 trains a day has turned out to be a key means of transport in India for longer distances. Introduction of high speed rails can take the might of railways to a next level. It can do a great favor to passengers, railways and is also to environment. These trains have speeds of about 300 kmph and can often cross the speed limit of 450 kmph. The countries which have well developed networks of HSR have witnessed a significant impact on various commercial aspects. Let’s have a deeper insight into these trains.

Opportunities and Hurdles:

Taking example of Japan, it has to face various financial, cultural and technological hurdles to make the bullet trains a reality. There are a lot of things, which India can learn from the experiences of Japan in this context.

  • Financial:

    “How much is it going to cost us..?” This is a common question which strikes everyone. Though it can’t be stated firmly, we can say that it requires huge fixed capital to get started. Comparing the costs of various HSR nations can give us a better picture of this aspect.

  • Technology: The Indian railways have to make use of advanced technology to lay new tracks, establish signaling systems, bring in new engines, design and manufacture electrical systems and compartments. Unlike the orthodox railways, these trains are to be completely isolated from the external environment. This is because the high speed trains can pull the people or cattle into it resulting in disasters.
  • Energy: These trains run on electricity. There are many advantages of using electrical energy and the one which worth mentioning is the low consumption of energy. Unlike other automobiles and aero planes, renewable energy sources can be used to power up these trains. One can easily estimate the operational cost and monitor carbon foot print.TH10_CHINA_HIGH_SP_1390388f

Advantages of High Speed Trains:

Energy efficient: Travel by rail is always the best means of transport for long distance travelling in dense areas or in places where the fuel cost is relatively high. High speed trains have proved to be highly fuels efficient per passenger per kilometer. In comparison to other vehicles of this kind, they can transport large number of passengers in a quick time.

Safety: These trains can be handled and controlled with ease. Its predictable course is the reason behind it. It is to be noted that the high speed rails can’t eliminate collisions but its chances can be minimized.

Convenience: These trains can fetch appreciable comfort to the passengers as they can move freely in the train while travelling. The change in weather has least effect on the train travel in this context. Major storms, heavy snow or fog can cause significant effect to these train travels. The vibrations are minimized by the continuously welded rails.

As the first step towards high speed rails, eight routes were identified across various parts of the country, which consists of major cities like Pune, Mumbai, Delhi, Agra, Chennai, Hyderabad, etc. On completion of this project, you can experience this amazing journey by tracking the current train status of these high speed trains in the official website of Indian railways.

Make Your Train Journey Less Boring…!

“100 stations will go Wi-Fi by the end of 2016”, you don’t believe us…? These words are said by the Google CEO Pichai himself. Isn’t this great news..? Let’s check out more about this here under:

Free Wi-Fi in railways:

Internet has turned out to be a great medium to connect the citizens of India, which is second highly populated country. As a part of this, the government in collaboration with Google has stepped forward to bring free internet to the railway stations. This isn’t going to be an easy task especially in our mighty railways. Initially, it is planned to bring internet connectivity to 400 stations across India and making this come true, the plan for the first hundred stations has been announced. An agreement has been signed between the Railtel and Google regarding this project. This project will be evaluated at the end of 2016 and necessary steps will be taken to successfully complete it. The key points to be worth to be mentioned in this context are as follows:Google-will-provide-Free-Wi-Fi-across-400-Indian-railway-stations

  • Pan-India optic fiber network, which has laid over 45,000 km of optic fiber network, is utilized by the Google to accomplish this task. The ISP will be provided by the Railtel and the WAN will be taken care by the Google. It is to be noted that this internet access is confined only to platforms and trains are not included under this project.
  • The speed and efficiency are given utmost importance. The users can watch HD standard streaming videos.
  • If you wonder, if this service is free of cost, you are not the only one who thinks of it. Taking example of airports, the Wi-Fi is free only for a limited period of time and there are chances that the same can be applied to the railways. This project can last for a longer period of time, only it can manage to explore different revenue models.

How can the free Wi-Fi benefit us..?

  • The first thing that strikes many passengers, when they hear the combo of railway and the Wi-Fi, is checking the railway pnr status Many times, you may have to constantly monitor your pnr status and it could be a hectic task without internet access. All that you need to do is, visit the official site of Indian railways, enter your pnr number and get the status.
  • The foreign tourists can be highly benefited by this service. It can help to explore information, which can make their plans easier. This has an indirect impact on the Indian tourism.
  • Fraudulent touts and middlemen have become an albatross in major railway stations. Free internet access can completely put an end to these anti-social elements and ensures high safety.
  • Students extensively use trains to travel. This project can help them to use their time effectively. Isn’t this a step towards smarter India…?

There are many hidden benefits of this project which has direct and indirect impact on various issues. The biggest advantage is that, your waiting time for the train will be less boring..!

Did You Notice These Changes Made By Indian Railways..?

The annual budget of Indian railway attracts the attention of all sections of the people. Such is the prominence of railways in India. Did you notice some incredible steps taken by Indian railways this year…? If you missed them, here they are:

Introduction of semi-luxury trains:

The semi-luxury trains were implemented mainly as tourist attraction in India. Initially it is scheduled to two train services under the names desert circuit and heritage circuit. As the name suggests, desert circuit covers Rajasthan cities Jaisalmer and Jaipur. The heritage circuit is scheduled to travel places Varanasi, Khajuraho and Agra. The introduction of these trains is expected to bring significant impact on the occupancy. Attractive packages are also being announced for these trips.train-10_082512115535

Double decker train:

India’s first double decker train is scheduled to travel between Mumbai and Goa. It is estimated that each coach of this train would cost about Rs.2.08 crore. These trains are scheduled to travel in about 10 different routes in India like Ahmadabad-Mumbai, Chennai-Bangalore, Pune-Mumbai, Lucknow-New Delhi etc. There has always been a demand for these trains in major cities of India. The frequency of these trains is also set to increase as per the requirements.

CNG train:

In its efforts to reduce the diesel consumption, the railways have determined to start CNG trains. The first train of its kind has started in the Rewari-Rohtak section of northern zone. This train has a dual fuel system and can run on both diesel and CNG. If this plan is implemented on a full length scale, it can cut down the emissions of green house gases to a large extent. The ministry has also aimed at the implementation of solar and wind powered trains.modified-1400-hp-engine

Visually impaired friendly railway station:

This is another significant move by Indian railways this year. Mysore railway station has become the first ever visually impaired friendly railway station in India. The tactile maps locating the entrances, washrooms, counters and platforms were made available. The dead ends are signified by using various constructional materials. A separate menu in the canteens written in Braille is prepared. Sides to turn, current location and other such details are also communicated in this script.

Share your ideas:

You can also play your part in the changing trend of Indian railways. For the first time ever in the history of India, the railways have opened gateways for the ideas and suggestions of public. This step is expected to play a key role in its forthcoming budget. You can suggest on various issues like crime prevention, disaster management, electrification, computerization and safe running of trains. The innovative ideas will be given top priority in this context. Every time you enquiry about the train status, you might have felt that some changes in frequency of trains, augmentations or in train extensions can bring comfort to the passengers. It’s time to share those ideas. January 15, 2016 is the last day to submit your ideas.

Don’t just sit there… It’s time to show your mark on our railways.

Oops…! Isn’t Your Ticket Confirmed…???

Are you in waiting list…?

Every time you find the letters “WL” on your ticket, you will get to know that it’s time to test your patience…! The grater the number which follows these letters, the longer could be the waiting. If you didn’t plan in advance for your train journey, there are good chances that your ticket can fall under waiting list. You have to wait until the passengers who booked prior to you cancel their tickets. However, the railways’ new scheme entitled “Vikalp Yojna,” which was enforced in November, can bring in some comfort in this context.

What is the scheme all about…?

If the ticket of the passenger is not confirmed, this scheme allows the passengers to travel with a confirmed ticket in the next scheduled trains on the same route. Initially, this was confined only to the passengers, who booked their tickets for mail and express trains online. An important point to note here is the railways aren’t charging the passengers for this service..! If you find any difference between the fares of two trains, you can claim the amount and the designated authorities will refund you. Isn’t this a great move…? Upon close observation, we can sense that this scheme isn’t favoring only the passengers but also the railways. The berths left out in the alternative trains can be filled up. All that you need to do in this context is to get familiar with the train time table and get to know about the alternative trains you can get.

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Salient features:

Check out the rules of IRCTC Vikalp Scheme:

  • It is not mandatory that you will get a berth reserved for the next alternative, when you opt for this scheme. It is subjected to the train and its berth availability.
  • Though you will not be charged for this service, you have to bear the cancellation charges as per your train status or berth of alternative train.
  • Often, the boarding and terminating stations can be altered to nearby stations. You have to be prepared for that..!
  • The transfer can be made to any other train available within 12 hours from your scheduled train timings, in the same route.
  • Never ever forget to monitor your PNR status.
  • The booking quota and concession are of least importance under this scheme. All wait listing passengers fall under the common roof.
  • This scheme can be applied only on the request of the passenger.
  • If the wait listing passenger is allotted an alternative train, he/she can’t travel by their original train.
  • In rare circumstances, the passengers can be dropped or re-allotted, despite providing the alternative trains. Make sure to check the PNR status even after preparation of charts representing final status.
  • If you wish to cancel your ticket after allocating the alternative train, you have to pay the cancelation charges as you will be treated as a confirmed passenger.
  • The complete details of this scheme are detailed in the official website of Indian railways. The call centre (139) can readily answer your queries and guide you.

This new scheme has turned out to be sign of relief for the railway passengers. Make sure to take the complete advantage of it when you are travelling by train.