New Delhi: After weeks of suspension of passenger train services due to coronavirus lockdown, the Railways is set to resume limited operations from Tuesday.
The Ministry of Railways on Sunday announced that it will “gradually” restart passenger train operations from May 12, initially with 15 pairs of trains that will be run as special trains from New Delhi railway station connecting 15 other cities of the country.
Passenger trains have remained suspended since more than 45 days, a first in the national transporter’s 167-year-old history.
“Indian Railways shall start more special services on new routes, based on the available coaches after reserving 20,000 coaches for COVID-19 care centres and adequate number of coaches being reserved to enable operation of up to 300 trains everyday as “Shramik Special” for stranded migrants,” the ministry said in a statement.
It will be mandatory for the passengers to wear face cover and undergo screening at departure and only asymptomatic passengers will be allowed to board the train.
List of Stations
These trains will be run as special trains from New Delhi Station connecting Dibrugarh, Agartala, Howrah, Patna, Bilaspur, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Secunderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Madgaon, Mumbai Central, Ahmedabad and Jammu Tawi
Booking for reservation in these trains will start at 4 pm on May 11. Tickets will be booked only online through the IRCTC website and the booking counters at the railway stations will remain closed.
The fare will be equivalent to Rajdhani Express train and all the coaches will be all AC with limited stoppage.
As many as 52 passengers will be allowed in AC three-tier coaches, while in AC two-tier coaches, 48 passengers will be allowed in order to follow the protocol of social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Railway Ministry’s Executive Director, Media, Rajesh Dutt Bajpai, said in a statement.
“To ensure that social distancing and other norms are strictly followedall seats will not be available for booking in the passenger trains,” said Union Ministry of State for Railways Suresh Angadi.