North Central Railway
Public Relations Prayagaraj
No. PR/NCR/1/2019Press ReleaseDated:15.01.2019
NCR USHERS IN A NEW ERA IN UNRESEVED TICKETING:FIRST COMMERCIAL UNRESERVED TICKET GENERATED IN KUMBH MELA BY THE ‘PRAVIN HANDHELD TICKET DISPENSING MACHINE’
In the evening of 14th January, a new age in Unreserved Ticketing in the Indian Railways was ushered in when the first unreserved ticket was generated using the newly launched ‘Pravin Handheld Ticket Dispensing Machine’, which was launched recently by the authorities of North Central Railway for use during the Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj. Hitherto, the chief method of purchase of Unreserved (UTS) ticket was through the ubiquitous ‘Ticket Windows’ at the ‘Booking Offices’ of Indian Railways across its network of stations. While 100 additional ticket windows were opened at the stations of Prayagraj district for dispensing unreserved tickets to the pilgrims coming to the Kumbh Mela, other methods of dispensing the same were also mulled over by the Railways. It was during such brainstorming that the idea of ‘Handheld Ticket Dispensing Machine’ came forward from the Deputy Chief Commercial Manager (UTS) of North Central Railway (after whose name the machine has been christened ‘Pravin’). “We immediately saw the potential in the idea and gave the go ahead to develop the same for use during the Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj” says GM/NCR Shri Rajiv Chaudhry. “There were a number of issues to be addressed and a number of problems to be solved in very little time before the idea could actually be translated into reality in the short window of time that we had before the commencement of the Kumbh Mela. That we have been able to do it within time speaks a lot about the commitment of the entire team that worked tirelessly to make Handheld Unreserved Ticketing a reality” he adds.The first commercial ticket for an actual journey was generated by the machine on the 14th January, at 18:43 hours in the evening for a journey from Allahabad junction to Subedarganj station. Costing just Rs 10, the ticket has become a bit of a collector’s item among railway enthusiasts and its photographs are doing the rounds on various social media groups of rail enthusiasts and rail fans. Pravin Handheld Ticket dispensing machine crossed the sale of tickets worth Rs 1 Lakh with in three hours of its starting peration today morning.“Our designated staff and volunteers wearing ‘Rail Kumbh Seva’ jackets are moving in the Sangam area and within the passenger enclosures at our railway stations with the Handheld Ticket Dispensing machines and any passenger wishing to buy unreserved journey ticket can buy it from them without having to move from their location in the Sangam area/passenger enclosure” said CPRO/NCR. “Even though the innovation has happened during the Kumbh Mela, we expect it to continue after the Kumbh Mela for dispensing tickets to passengers and pilgrims during other important Melas also, which are held within the geographical limits of the NCR throughout the year” he added. The initiative of dispensing tickets using the ‘Pravin Handheld Ticket Dispensing Machine’ has also been welcomed and appreciated by pilgrims who are experiencing the joy and convenience of the ticket window coming to them rather than they having to go to the ticket window to purchase the tickets. The USP of the system is that this machine works both in the ‘online’ and ‘offline’ modes and so its efficacy is unaffected by the availability or lack of mobile tower signals in the area where it is being operated. This innovation by the NCR aptly illustrates how much positive change a bit of imagination, and the administrative will to make that imagination a reality, can bring in the lives of people.