Karti Chidambaram urges Railway Minister Vaishnaw to restore ticket-less travel for senior citizens | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Karti Chidambaram urges Railway Minister Vaishnaw to restore ticket-less travel for senior citizens

Jun 13, 2024 04:37 PM IST

Congress MP Karti Chidambaram wrote to Railway Minister Vaishnaw to bring back ticket-less travel for senior citizens after suspending it during the pandemic

Congress MP Karti Chidambaram addressed a letter to Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, on Thursday, urging him to bring back ticket-less travel for senior citizens for the well-being of those who depend on the railways for their commute.

Congress MP Karti Chidambaram urges Railway Minister Vaishnaw to restore ticketless travel for senior citizens. (PTI Photo)
Congress MP Karti Chidambaram urges Railway Minister Vaishnaw to restore ticketless travel for senior citizens. (PTI Photo)

In the letter, the Congress MP stated that bringing back senior citizen concessions would address safety issues, improve travel experience and make the Indian Railways more user-friendly for citizens.

Read more: Long-distance trains from Pune delayed up to 20 hours, pax demand solution

According to a PTI report, Chidambaram said, “Firstly, the suspension of the senior citizens' concession in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic remains a pressing concern. Although the pandemic-related restrictions ended in 2021, this concession has not been reinstated as of 2024.”

According to PTI, the Sivaganga MP also highlighted that in August 2022, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Railways had recommended that "the concessions granted to different categories of passengers should be considered judiciously".

Chidambaram noted that before, men above 60 years of age and women above 58 years got a concession of 40 per cent and 50 per cent, respectively, and now they had to pay full fare, according to PTI.

Read more: National Railway Museum in Delhi receives bomb threat mail: Official

Chidambaram's letter pointed out that the standing committee had also asked for the concession to be reviewed and reinstated, at least in Sleeper Class and third AC, to help senior citizens who are vulnerable and in need.

“In a Rajya Sabha response on July 28, 2023, you mentioned that ‘the Government provided a subsidy of 59,837 crore on passenger tickets in 2019-20, amounting to a 53 per cent concession on average for every passenger'."

"However, the withdrawal of the senior citizens' concession indicates that the overall concessions provided before COVID-19 were more generous than the current average of 53 per cent," Chidambaram said, as per a PTI report.

He added that based on several RTI applications, the Indian Railways has earned over 5,800 crore from the withdrawal of senior citizen concessions between March 20, 2020, and January 31, 2024, according to PTI. The Congress MP stated that as the largest rail network in Asia and the second largest in the world, the concessions needed to be restored.

Read more: Ayodhya Dham railway station expansion next on Centre’s agenda

According to PTI, he also spoke up about an incident on June 11, when passengers were unable to board the Chennai Central-Howrah Superfast Mail in Chennai due to people without tickets occupying reserved seats.

"Railway staff admitted that it is challenging to check every passenger for a confirmed ticket. Consequently, several passengers were stranded at the station without accommodation or alternative travel options. This incident is not isolated, as social media is rife with complaints about overcrowding by ticketless passengers, even on premium services like the Vande Bharat Express," Chidambaram said, according to a PTI report.

Catch every big hit, every wicket with Crickit, a one stop destination for Live Scores, Match Stats, Infographics & much more. Explore now!

See more

Get Current Updates on India News, Budget 2024, Weather Today along with Latest News and Top Headlines from India and around the world.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Wednesday, July 17, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On