Home Guards fleece travellers at railway station
Ticketing machines misused at NDLS
The railways had installed automatic ticket vending machines at several major stations under the Delhi division of Northern Railway to make ticketing easier and quicker for passengers.
But the facility has been turned into a money-minting tool by none other than some of the Home Guards deployed by Delhi Police at New Delhi railway station.
A group of Home Guards are posted at the first-floor ticketing section on the Ajmeri Gate side of the station for crowd control and checking touts.
But guards themselves have been fleecing passengers by using their smart cards to buy tickets for them. Passengers who do not want to wait in long queues at ticket counters selling second-class and platform tickets are being targeted by Home Guards, who charge extra for the tickets.
“All ticket counters are flooded with passengers. My mother was standing at the women’s counter, but the queue there is also very long. The Home Guard manning the line offered to buy the ticket, but at a premium,” said Bhatinda resident Satwant.
“He asked for Rs 10 per person. I paid him the money as my mother is too old to stand that long in a queue,” said Satwant.
Any passenger who wants to buy a ticket using the vending machine must have a smart card issued by the railways. Passengers can buy the card by paying a security deposit of Rs 50. It can be recharged with a minimum of Rs 20 and in multiples of Rs 50, up to the maximum limit of Rs 1,000.
When this issue was brought to the notice of railway authorities, they said they will look into the matter.
“The ticket vending machines have been installed to provide an additional facility for the passengers. If the machines are being misused by some officials on duty, it would be seriously looked into. If the Home Guards are found misusing the service, appropriate action would be taken,” said Y S Rajput, a Delhi division railway spokesman said.
The vending machines have been installed at 30 major stations in and around the capital, including New Delhi, Hazrat Nizamuddin, Tilak Bridge, Shivaji Bridge, Delhi Junction, Anand Vihar, Shahdara, Delhi Cantonment, Sarai Rohilla, Kishanganj, Shakurbasti, Subzi Mandi, Sadar Bazar and Okhla.