Indian Railways has decided to extend the advance reservation period (ARP) from 30 days to 120 days for its special Rajdhani Express trains as well as the mail express trains that will commence services on 1 June.
The revised instructions of Indian Railways goes for 30 special Rajdhani-type trains that had started on 12 May. The department will introduce 200 Special Mail Express trains on 1 June, taking the total number of trains to 230, an official release said.
The Railways will implement the changes above at 8 AM, the first train-booking date being 31 May, the release said.
Railways has started operating Shramik Special trains to transport stranded migrant workers, students, pilgrims and tourists across the country.
As on 25 May, the Railways has ferried over 40 lakh people in over 3,000 Shramik Special trains.
The Railways has suspended the passenger, mail and express train services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Shramik Specials were the first set of trains for the passengers.
Earlier, the Ministry of Railways had said that the advance reservation period or advance booking time will be a maximum of 30 days. While the system will generate waitlisted tickets, Railways will allow passengers to board trains only if the seat is confirmed.
The department is not offering Tatkal and premium Tatkal services as of now.
The Railways is gradually restarting the train service. Bookings have already started through the IRCTC and the passenger reservation system (PRS) across the country as per the time table for the 200 Special trains it wishes to run 1 June onwards.
Other terms such as current booking and Tatkal quota allocation of seats, roadside stations etc will be the same as in regular time-tabled trains.
The Railways had suspended all its passenger, mail and express train operations from 25 March in the wake of countrywide lockdown to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, Shramik Special trains began on 1 May to ferry stranded migrant labourers, pilgrims, tourists, and students back to their home states.