India to 'gradually' restart rail operations in lockdown easing

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Indian Railways plans to gradually restart passenger train operations from May 12, initially with 15 pairs of trains (30 return journeys).

These trains will run to Dibrugarh (Assam), Agartala (Tripura), Howrah (West Bengal), Patna (Bihar), Bilaspur (Chhattisgarh), Ranchi (Jharkhand), Bhubaneswar (Odisha), Secunderabad (Telangana), Bengaluru (Karnataka), Chennai (Tamil Nadu), Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala), Madgaon (Goa), Mumbai Central (Maharashtra), Ahmedabad (Gujarat) and Jammu Tawi (Jammu and Kashmir). The temperature inside AC coaches shall be suitably regulated for this goal.

Ticket booking counters at the railway stations shall remain closed and no counter tickets including platform tickets will be issued.

Passengers should wear face cover and undergo screening at departure. Neither tatkal bookings nor waitlist will be allowed.

Passengers can book book train tickets only through IRCTC's official website - irctc.co.in.

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-Train schedule; protocols for booking, entry and movement of passengers; and coach service specifications shall be widely publicized by MoR. "Passengers are encouraged to carry their own food and drinking water", Railways Ministry said. The Home Ministry SOPs directed states and UTs for its strict implementation so that migrant workers can be provided the train facility and simultaneously all the norms to contain the COVID-19 pandemic are duly followed.

Though the Indian Railways had announced that ticket booking will begin from 4pm on Monday many users couldn't get through probably due to technical issues and overload. Also, only COVID 19 asymptomatic passengers will be allowed to board these trains.

Every Shramik special train has 24 coaches, each with a capacity of 72 seats.

The Ministry of Railways on Monday revised the guidelines for the "Shramik Special" trains that ferry migrant workers from various states during the nationwide coronavirus-induced lockdown, reported PTI.

"No tickets will be booked across the reservation counter on any railway station".

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