As a sigh of relief for people currently under lockdown; the Indian Railways has announced that it is planning to gradually resume passenger train operations from May 12. Only air cinditioned coaches will run with limited stoppages.
According to the government notification, passenger train service will begin with 15 pairs of special trains. The trains have been scheduled to start from New Delhi and will go to all major stations across the country, to begin with.
Stations that are planned to get train access from May 12 are New Delhi Station to Dibrugarh, Agartala, Howrah, Patna, Bilaspur, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Secunderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Madgaon, Mumbai Central, Ahmedabad and Jammu Tawi.
'Railway operations will resume with 15 pairs of special trains': Piyush Goyal
Union Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry Piyush Goyal posted on Twitter that railway operations will resume with 15 pairs of special trains connecting New Delhi with major stations across India initially.
Goyal informed that ticket bookings for these trains will begin at 4 pm on May 11 on IRCTC, https://www.irctc.co.in/. As a preventive measure to contain the virus, ticket booking counters at the railway stations will remain closed.
Union Minister Piyush Goyal said in a tweet, "Railways plans to gradually restart passenger train operations from 12th May, 2020, initially with 15 pairs of special trains connecting New Delhi with major stations across India. Booking in these trains will start at 4 pm on 11th May."
Other stations will see train service resuming eventually and it will be based on first reserving 20,000 coaches for COVID-19 care centres and an adequate number of coaches being reserved to enable operation of up to 300 trains every day as "Shramik Special" for stranded migrants. Once this is done, more trains will be started on new routes.
Passengers with a valid confirmed ticket will be allowed to enter the railway station premises and no waiting tickets will be entertained. As a preventive measure, passengers will have to wear a face mask and undergo screening at departure and only asymptomatic passengers will be allowed to board the train.
The notification further stated that train schedule will be issued in due course.