If you want to book a railway coach for special occasions like a marriage function or a religious tour: you can now just do it through a “single window booking” on IRCTC, thanks to the latest move of the Railway ministry.
The circular, issued by Railway board earlier this month, states that special trains, coaches, saloons can now be booked on full tariff rate (FTR) through a “single window booking system” of the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).
“Henceforth, any individual or party seeking to book trains/coaches on FTR shall approach the IRCTC and the IRCTC will book trains/coaches online on behalf of the individual or party” it says.
Till now, the concerned party had to undergo a cumbersome process which included visiting the station where the journey would commence and getting approval from chief booking supervisor or station master with a written request containing journey details for FTR booking.
Mostly, special trains or coaches were booked by travel agencies taking parties for religious tours, schools taking students on educational study tours, MNCs taking employees out for excursions and even individuals travelling with a large contingent.
However, these tickets will be costlier. A charge of five per cent on the total fare shall be levied, over and above a 30 per cent service charge on such bookings.
The railway has fixed a security deposit of ₹ 50,000 per coach and for special trains a minimum of 18 coaches will be charged. The entire transaction in the new online system will have to be digital, the board has said.