Indian Railways passenger trains including Mail/Express trains, suburban trains, intercity trains and other long-distance train services have been shut in the wake of the 21-day lockdown
Indian Railways passengers take note! Train services have now been suspended till April 14, 2020 after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a nationwide lockdown yesterday in order to prevent the Coronavirus COVID-19 infection from spreading across India. All Indian Railways passenger trains including Mail/Express trains, suburban trains, intercity trains and other long-distance train services have been shut in the wake of the 21-day lockdown. Earlier, the Railway Board had announced the suspension of train services from March 22, 2020 till March 31, 2020, but now, all the passenger train services have been shut till April 14, 2020.
In this regard, Indian Railways had announced that the refund policy of train tickets has been relaxed. According to the Railway Board’s decision, all PRS counter generated tickets will be refunded to passengers automatically and they will not be required to visit the railway stations for availing the refund. The passengers can now apply for the refund of tickets between the period March 21, 2020 – June 21, 2020, which is for a duration of three months. This step has been taken in order to avoid overcrowding at railway stations and promote social distancing, which is the need of the hour to contain the COVID-19 virus infection
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also said that the supply of essential services will not be stopped during the 21-day lockdown. For this, the Railway Board has been ensuring that the transportation of essential commodities such as food grains, sugar, milk, salt, fruits, edible oil and vegetables is not hindered across the country.
Even though the passenger train services have been stopped amid the lockdown, the freight services are operational across all routes. These freight trains are being operated smoothly and the supply of essential items is being done at ease. Additionally, Indian Railways is also making sure that all the outsourced and contractual employees who have been engaged as housekeeping staff on the rail network are being paid accordingly, so that they are not retrenched and there is no strain on their livelihood during the period of lockdown.