Metro Railway authorities have reintroduced paper tickets for the 25.13-km stretch with both old and new names printed on these tickets. The result: both these old paper tickets and new ones with new names printed on them would be sold through the counters.
Metro travellers are likely to have a harrowing time this Puja. Paper tickets will be issued for 7 days starting Saturday.
“Two different sets of paper tickets have already reached all the stations. While the old names of the stations are printed on one set of the tickets the other sets have the new names. It will definitely create huge confusion among passengers and they may get down at the wrong station,” said a senior Metro official.
According to the circular issued by the Metro Rail headquarters in Kolkata such paper tickets will be issued for seven days starting Saturday. A senior station superintendent revealed that the headquarters has instructed them, to clear the stock of old sets of paper tickets first before switching to the fresh printed ones.
“Tickets reading Kudghat instead of Netaji or Bansdroni instead of Masterda Surya Sen has created a lot of confusion last year. Several passengers - a large chunk of them being from the district - could not match the name of the station printed on the platform and on the ticket and alighted at the wrong station,” said a station manager.
Spokesperson Protyush Ghosh, however, said that they are still awaiting the final nod from the Metro GM before taking the final call. “Meanwhile we have kept our contingency plans open. We are ready to face any situation,” said Ghosh.
Metro officials said, when they first installed the new ticketing system on July 8 last year, there were 7 lakh tokens and 4 lakh smart cards into the system. This year, during stock taking only 70,000 tokens were left. The smart card stock was also running low. “In the initial days, many people took away tokens as souvenirs. This trend gradually came down but some are still lost during technical snags when gates are left open. During the Puja, when we expect to get many new users, there may be a tendency to take away the tokens as souvenirs. We are not going to take risks,” an official said.