Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had ordered the catering staff to stop asking for tips from rail passengers and overcharging for food within 48 hours, reported The Indian Express. Indian Railways has been trying to tackle the problem of overcharging by the catering staff for long now but it is for the first time that a strict deadline has been set for the same. On one hand, as can be seen, there are stickers on trains that sensitize passengers not to tip, and yet the catering staff appears at the end of the journey and asks for the same from passengers. As far as prices are concerned, here is how passengers can stand their ground and not pay a single rupee extra. The Indian Railway had posted a video on its Twitter handle and revealed the prices set by the ministry.
The Railways price list quotes Janata meal or Economy meal at Rs 15 and Rs 20 at stations and on trains respectively. Beverages which include coffee, tea, and drinking water at both stations and trains are priced at Rs 7, Rs 15 and Rs 15 respectively. Passengers who are vegetarian can order a full-course meal priced at Rs 45 on stations and Rs 50 on trains.
Notably, following the orders passed by Goyal, letters were sent out to all zonal Railways units across the country, asking them to ensure that the practice should be stopped with immediate effect. After the order was passed by Goyal and the ministry directive, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) contacted its contractors immediately to pass on the information and the deadline concerned.
Failing to follow the orders will invite a heavy penalty, reported IE. Railways’ catering inspectors will spread out throughout the trains to inspect if the practice is still prevalent, starting Monday. Also, the social media platforms will be under monitoring to look out for passengers complaining either of overcharging or about waiters asking for tips.