New Delhi — The Ministry of Railways has decided to modify some of the rules pertaining to purchase of Tatkal tickets. Under the modified rules, there will be no need to furnish photocopy of proof of identity while booking Tatkal ticket from computerised reservation counter or to indicate its number at the time of booking of Tatkal ticket at the counter or through internet.
In addition, as per the proposed changes, in case of ticket booked under Tatkal scheme, one of the passengers has to produce anyone of the following proofs of identity in original during the journey, failing which all the passengers booked on that ticket will be treated as travelling without ticket and charged accordingly:
- Voter Photo Identity Card issued by Election Commission of India.
- PAN Card issued by Income Tax Department
- Driving Licence issued by RTO
- Photocopy Identity Card having serial number issued by Central/State Government
- Student Identity Card with photograph issued by recognized School/College for their Students
- Nationalised Bank Passbook with photograph
- Credit Cards issued by Banks with laminated photograph
- Unique Identification Card “Aadhar”
- Photo identity cards having serial number issued by Public Sector Undertaking of State/Central Government, District Administrations, Municipal bodies and Panchayat Administrations.
These modifications will come into effect by 1st September, 2015. The exact date of effect will be notified separately.
Rationale For Changing Rules For Tatkal tickets Booking:
As per extant/present instructions for undertaking journey on Tatkal tickets, the passenger at the time of booking a ticket from PRS Centrehas to provide a photocopy of identity card which he/she will carry during the journey. The number of this identity card is indicated on the ticket as well as reservation chart and during the journey the passenger has to carry the same original proof of identity failing which he/she is treated as travelling without ticket and charged accordingly. Similarly, in case of passengers booking ticket through internet, the number and type of identity card to be carried by the passenger during the journey is indicated at the time of booking of ticket and the passenger has to carry the same original proof of identity during the journey failing which all the passengers are treated as travelling without ticket and charged accordingly. This provision has been done away to facilitate passengers to buy Tatkal tickets since it is possible that a person may be booking ticket for his parents (aged) /children who are staying in a different city (hostel) and may not have photocopy of their photo identity card. Now it would be possible to book tickets in such situations. However, the requirement of the passenger to carry one of the permitted photo Identity Card in original to prove his identity at the time of travel continues to ensure there is no misuse.
Presently the number given in the identity card has to be entered while generating the Tatkal ticket. This is increasing the transaction time. The transaction time for individuals booking through PRS and internet is getting increased due to requirement of entering the identity card number while the agents are able to book faster using scripting software and thereby getting unfair advantage. By doing away with entering the identity card number, the transaction time is reduced. Further in case the identity number is wrongly typed by the railway clerk and found to be not tallying with the original identity card number, the TTE has no discretion but to treat the passenger as without ticket. There have been reports of passengers having suffered due to this problem. The proposed modification solves this problem.
Presently if the passenger is carrying a valid photo-identity card (Aadhaar Card/Passport/Driving Licence/PAN Card etc.) but is not the same as mentioned in the ticket at the time of booking the passenger will be treated as without ticket. Many complaints have been received in this regard where the passengers to continue travel had to pay the fare of the ticket plus penalty for not showing the same photo-identity card as mentioned at the time of booking. In case the passenger misplaces the identity card mentioned in the ticket but is carrying any of the other identity card in the prescribed list the present system will treat him as without ticket. A large number of uneducated, senior citizen, women and people from rural areas were getting affected due to this rule. This was also highlighted by Hon’ble MPs in various meetings of the Parliamentary Standing Committee. This issue will also get resolved under the proposed changes.
Presently in case of normal (non-Tatkal) ticket a passenger can travel by showing anyone of the 10 prescribed proof of identity in original. For Tatkal it was restricted to only the identity proof mentioned in the ticket at the time of booking the ticket. This anomaly has now been corrected in the proposed changes and the Tatkal Ticket holder can also travel by showing anyone of the ten prescribed proof of identity.
In a nutshell, even after the modified rules, there is no dilution on proving identity at the time of travel by showing the original photo-identity card. The proposed change is only to facilitate easy booking of Tatkal tickets by correcting existing anomalies.