In a step to revolutionize the service facilities offered by the Indian railways, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) have conducted several initiatives. Here is a description of some of the noted initiatives taken or announced since September, 2015.
Extending the portal time for booking reservation by 15 minutes to 11.45 pm, importantly under the earlier arrangement, the IRCTC was previously allowing their passenger to book e-tickets only till 11.30 pm. In yet another passenger-friendly initiative, the Indian railways has extended the lower-berth seat reservations earmarked for them to four from the existing limit of two for senior citizens, females (above the age of 45), and pregnant women passengers.
In what could also be regarded as a major achievement for the Indian Railways, the railways have been able to manage the maximum speed of all the long-distance trains up to 130 kmph from the previous average of 100 kmph. Importantly, the Indian railways are often accused of being too slow, even running at a lesser speed than the prescribed speed limit.
Additionally, Google also announced collaborating with the Indian Railways and telecom company RailTel to provide high-speed Wi-Fi to 400 railway stations across the country — though it will take some time to reach that number, the first 100 stations are scheduled to come online by the end of 2016. Indian Railways is also reportedly gearing up to replace all conventional toilets in the trains with the bio-vacuum toilets. The Indian Railways has also launched Indian Railway Knowledge Portal for dissemination of information about the Indian railroads. According to the ministry, these initiatives are in line with the Digital India campaign of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Indian railways has also announced providing vending machines serving fresh water, tea and coffee to its commuters, pantry cars will have a dinning lounge with buffet arrangement and all other modern-days facilities, in a maximum 2 years time-frame. These passenger-friendly initiatives are indeed aimed to revolutinarize the travelling experience of its passengers.